Using resource tracking and feedback to enhance accountability and resource effectiveness

Since 2011, Development Initiatives (DI) and our Ugandan partner, the NGO Development Research and Training (DRT) have been implementing a four-phased model in northern Uganda to enhance the accountability and effectiveness of resources. 41 community volunteers, known as ‘resource trackers’, have been trained in five districts of northern Uganda, a region with high poverty levels that was affected by conflict until 2011.

Resource trackers are selected by their communities to lead in demanding information and feeding back to relevant duty bearers on the relevance, quality and effectiveness of resources to reduce poverty that are reaching their communities.

This paper describes the emerging findings from over three years of resource tracking in northern Uganda. It discusses lessons learned on building demand for evidence, creating a culture of accountability and involving disempowered groups. Access to information on resources and service delivery, and access to decision makers at local and national levels, are found to be key in facilitating and boosting citizen participation in holding duty bearers to account for resource allocation and service delivery. Feedback loops are found to play an important role in supporting a Data Revolution at local level.