Roadmap on good governance for state institutions in the Republic of Macedonia is the latest publication based on the research on the level of openness of institutions in six countries in the region, conducted within the Accountability, Technology and Institutional Openness Network in Southeastern Europe – ACTION SEE project, implemented by Metamorphosis Foundation for Internet and Society.
In order to measure the degree of institutional openness, the ACTION SEE partners, adhering to international standards, recommendations as well as examples of good practice, assessed institutions through special quantitative and qualitative indicators, which assess institutions on the basis of: access to information on official websites of institutions, quality of the legal framework for individual cases, other sources of public informing and questionnaires delivered to institutions.
The research results show that the average level of openness of the executive power in the region, including the government, ministries and other executive bodies, amounts 47%, whereas the level of openness in Macedonia amounts 36% under relevant indicators. The Macedonian Parliament has a score of 59% under the indicators on openness, which is below the average 63% calculated for openness of parliaments in the region.
Courts in the Republic of Macedonia have a score of 52% under the indicators on openness, whereas the Judicial Council demonstrated an insignificantly better score of 58% under relevant indicators. As regards prosecution services, the State Prosecution Office has a score of 51% under the indicators on openness, the Council of Public Prosecutors has a score of only 38% and basic and higher prosecution offices demonstrate underperformance with a score of only 26%.
Municipalities in the Republic of Macedonia showed 34% completion of the Index of openness, which equals the regional openness result of local self-governments.
The assessment was conducted in the period from October to the end of December 2016. On the basis of the monitoring of data and the findings, a set of recommendations and guidelines dedicated to institutions was developed based on the research results.
Openness represents a key condition for democracy – since it allows citizens to receive information and knowledge necessary for equal participation in political life, effective decision-making and holding institutions accountable for policies which they conduct. Institutions worldwide undertake specific activities with the aim to enhance their transparency and accountability before the citizens.
This publication comprises practical proposals for improvement of the level of openness of state institutions in Macedonia. Such guidelines have also been drafted by the partner organizations in Serbia, Montenegro, Albania, Kosovo and Bosnia and Herzegovina, which are dedicated to institutions in these states.
* The Index of Openness is a composite indicator that measures the degree to which governments in the Western Balkan countries are open to citizens and society and is designed in order to define to which degree citizens of the Western Balkans receive opportune and understandable information from their institutions.
The Accountability, Technology and Institutional Openness Network in Southeastern Europe – ACTION SEE project is implemented by Metamorphosis Foundation in partnership with Westminster Foundation for Democracy from Great Britain, CRTA – Center for Research, Transparency and Accountability from Serbia, Citizens Association Why not? from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Center for Democratic Transition from Montenegro, Open Data Kosovo (ODK) from Kosovo, and Levizja Mjaft! from Albania, with financial support of the European Union.
The project aims to increase the inclusion of civic society and media organisations in decision making processes and the creation of public opinion and policies, as well as to raise the capacity of civic societies to address sensitive issues.