(Last updated in: 06/04/2018 - 10:35am)

Transparency challenges and solutions in Brazilian states and municipalities discussed at event

Robert Gregory Michener, professor at FGV’s Brazilian School of Public and Business Administration (EBAPE), attended the 5th Ordinary Meeting of the Ombudsman Office Network on March 14. During the event, the professor spoke about the challenges and solutions of sub-national transparency.

Michener presented the transparency measures adopted in recent years in Brazil and drew a comparison with the systems currently used by the United States, Chile, Mexico, and the United Kingdom. The professor also spoke about FGV’s Public Transparency Program, which he coordinates. The initiative has evaluated – across multiple levels and branches of government – the enforcement of the Information Access Act (LAI), pointing out problems and solutions.

On a sub-national level, Michener said that a possible solution would be to create a supra-national supervisory body – similar to the one in Mexico (INAI) – and restructure the current control system. Another proposal was the standardization of shared information by states and municipalities.

“Brazil urgently needs more independent control bodies, especially institutions dedicated to better steer the production, management, and dissemination of public information. Public information is crucial to coordinate public policies, particularly in a country with three levels of federalism and so much red tape. It is impossible to implement and monitor policies without information. In this regard, access to information is a necessary and essential condition to ensure effective control, social engagement, and efficient coordination of public policies”, he said.