WINGS – Transparency and accountability: walking the talk

Transparency and accountability invariably crop up in any discussion of philanthropy’s ‘big issues’. It is now widely acknowledged that the public disclosure of information around giving, on the part of both donors and grantees, is a key factor for the sector’s future development, if it is to build trust with, and gather support from, the general public and governments.

Against this background, WINGS has been organizing a global consultation with the aim of deepening the understanding and practice of transparency and accountability in international philanthropy. Three workshops – hosted in Cairo, Johannesburg and Bogota – offered us a unique view on current practice and aspirations, and we will be using the experience to expand the dialogue on transparency and accountability.

The workshops brought together more than 100 WINGS members, partners and other philanthropic organizations, and produced valuable information on the challenges and obstacles to good practice, while also suggesting practical steps and recommendations. In September 2014 WINGS is launching a toolkit on transparency and accountability modelled on these outcomes, as a way of framing the topic, reinforcing its importance to philanthropy and demonstrating best practice.

This is not an end-product but a step towards building inclusive practices in transparency and accountability that recognize the global context. WINGS will continue to carry out discussions and to host resources on practice around the world in its Knowledge Center and Transparency and Accountability webpages.

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