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Exploring government administrative data to hold governments accountable in the Big Data Era

last modified Sep 10, 2015 02:49 PM
Mihály Fazekas, Department of Sociology

This presentation will brief workshop participants about the state-of-the art in using big data for measuring quality of government, corruption, and spending efficiency, with particular focus on data and indicators of government contracting. It would allow participants to have a unique glance into a recently starting innovative Horizon2020-funded research project led by the University of Cambridge (Department of Sociology: Dr Mihály Fazekas). This project, called DIGIWHIST, systematically collects, analyses, and broadly disseminates tender-level information on public procurement in 35 jurisdictions across Europe (EU28+). This data is linked to company and public organisation information on finances and ownership and to information on mechanisms that increase accountability of public officials such as asset declarations.
Government contracting is a key area for government accountability as it represents roughly one third of total public spending in OECD countries and it is generally regarded as one of the highest corruption risk domain.
The talk would provide a brief overview of DIGIWHIST, the data it uses, and the societal challenge it responds to; then it would highlight one particular application of the data and indicators developed in the project: using public procurement red flags to measure corruption risks and put the results into a web-based platform easily accessible for the general public