Why am I going to the Open Government Partnership meeting in London today? Simply because information is power- and a key part of ending poverty by 2030 is empowering people currently struggling to survive on less than $1.25 a day.
Of course poor people need basic necessities in health, education, water and sanitation. But alongside these, ending poverty requires a power shift in favour of the poor – so that governments, companies and aid agencies are more accountable for the services they provide and how they spend money in the name of the poorest.
Poor people need information on a range of things – not just their entitlements, but health information, data on prices at the market where they buy goods and sell produce, information on jobs or micro loans that can help people invest in more secure livelihoods.
Information can give poorer people – not just those in poorer countries, but in OECD countries too – more opportunity, more control, more choice. And feedback from people who are poor or vulnerable is also essential, to ensuring that governments, service providers (including NGOs) and companies are delivering quality services to those most in need.
So today, what I’m hoping to hear is more about how open government and the data revolution is going to deliver more accountability, better services to vulnerable people in every country and the end of absolute poverty by 2030.
You can find Tony on Twitter @tonygerman #ogp13