To be successful, CoST has to be implemented with the participation and support of civil society.
Civil society organisations represent the public - the ultimate beneficiaries of improved transparency and accountability in public construction - through a wide array of non-governmental and not-for-profit organisations. They are concerned about transparency and the proper use of public funds, while local community groups are particularly interested in projects designed to meet their infrastructure needs (health, water, education).
The participation of civil society organisations in CoST is important for two main reasons:
- To ensure that the information released is relevant and usable by the public.
- To help build public demand and interest in greater accountability from the government and private sector.
This is typically achieved through representation on the Multi-Stakeholder Group from civil society organisations. The interests of civil society organisations vary, and can include those with a particular interest in:
- communities directly affected by or benefiting from a project
- social and environmental impacts
- spending priorities and value for money,
- professional and technical issues
- transparency and anti-corruption.
Ideally there will be a spread of civil society representatives on each MSG, covering these various interests.
International civil society organisations have recognised the benefits that CoST provides. In particular, multi-stakeholder governance and the disclosure of key infrastructure information into the public domain is of interest to them. A number of international civil society organisations have become CoST Supporters.
Please click here
for a briefing note which shows how civil society participation has worked so far within CoST and the benefits for civil society supporters of the programme.