In the world of business, consumers are empowered to express their opinions through purchasing power. In government, constituents can hold officials and agencies accountable through democratic processes.
But what about in development? The processes in place for citizen engagement are piecemeal and incomplete. How do beneficiaries ensure their voices have a place in determining what projects come to them, which implementers are funded, and become valued as partners in development?
We know that citizen engagement in service delivery and the civil sector improve outcomes. We know that there are some initiatives to reach citizens being practiced in development. However, the knowledge of researchers and practitioners has not yet been compiled in a comprehensive way in order to determine which methods work best and to explore new ones.
Our goal is to make feedback loops the new norm in aid, development, and philanthropy, and we envision a world where citizens are empowered with creative, field-tested ways to productively interact with aid agencies, foundations, and governments.