UNICEF with Pristina Municipality and Open Data Kosovo Champion Online Platform to Monitor Contracting and Procurement Services

Pristina, Kosovo – to improve the lives of citizens, municipalities use taxpayers’ money for the procurement of goods and services that are necessary to meet unmet social needs.  Many of these procurements relate to issues that are important to citizen, which is why they demand transparent and accountable local governance.

In Pristina, Kosovo, a new standard of Municipal transparency is emerging which includes fully open and accessible data on procurement procedures, solicitation and implementation. The data also includes full publication of signed contracts with vendors. This important development in transforming public spending is a value created by the new UNICEF-supported online platform, which is promising to allow every citizen of Pristina to have access to real-time, open data on public contracts approved by the Municipality of Pristina.

Developed by Open Data Kosovo and the Municipality of Pristina through UNICEF’s Techstitution initiative, the platform—dubbed ‘Open Contracts’—is created to drive efficiency and transparency in procurement and contracting services in Pristina Municipality. The digital solution will put data and technology at the center of every decision designed to improve the quality of life for Pristina citizens.

The platform includes two modules: the first one directed at aiding the managerial structure of the institution, and the second one solely focused on enabling the public’s access to contracts. What this means is that besides greatly facilitating access to Municipality procurement  processes, the platform also serves to regulate and accelerate the management of public contracts by municipal officials. The platform also indicates the dynamics of the execution of each contract: green contracts are those that have been completed in time; yellow indicates contracts approaching the deadline; and red indicates contracts that have passed the deadline. This stresses public responsibility on the institution to take appropriate measures to ensure the completion of a procurement process in due time.

Evidence shows that increasing transparency and public engagement in government contracting is a powerful way to craft better public deals, improve public services, build trust and promote a more competitive business environment.[1] We trust it will also make municipalities more responsive to issues affecting children, youth and families.

At UNICEF, we believe that access to information is a big step towards responsive and transparent governance, which is why we highly value the commitment of the Municipality of Pristina and Open Data Kosovo for making this platform a reality.

UNICEF’s Techstitution initiative is supported and funded by Austrian Development Agency and implemented by Open Data Kosovo and Girls Coding Kosova.

[1] https://www.open-contracting.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/OpenContracting4EI_Web.pdf