Working Bibliography and Internet Sources
2002 International Policy Fellow
Open Society Institute, Budapest
Title of the Project:
STRATEGIES FOR USING INFORMATION TECHNOLOGIES FOR CURBING PUBLIC-SECTOR CORRUPTION: THE CASE OF THE CZECH REPUBLIC
Activity Report (March 2002 – March 2003)
A. ACTIVITY REPORT
FIRST STEPS OF THE RESEARCH
As regards its focus and the sequencing of the research steps the actual research followed the original schedule. The research started in March 2002, when an analysis and assessment of the data acquired during the preparatory phase of the research was completed. This preparatory research was executed as part of my Ph.D. dissertation research on the influence of transnationally acting non-governmental organizations on policy-making in the Czech Republic. As a result of this work, an academic paper ‘Transnationalization of Domestic Politics’: The Influence of Transnationally Acting Non-Governmental Organizations on Policy-Making in the Czech Republic was submitted to the 4th Annual Graduate Student Retreat organized by the Society for Comparative Research in Budapest in May 2002.
IPF MARCH & JUNE 2002 SEMINARS
On the basis of consultations with the Budapest-based mentors (Laszlo Bruszt and Dorothee Bohle) during the March IPF seminar appropriate steps and strategies for the research were identified. The subsequent stage of the research focused on a detailed analysis of printed and on-line resources (governmental documents, internal memoranda, press releases, and official reports of governmental and non-governmental actors) and a detailed study of selected newspaper information. During the March seminar I also attended a workshop on e-government and e-democracy organized by the Information Program of the OSI (see section Attended Conferences below).
On the basis of consultations with the Budapest-based mentors during the June IPF seminar the structure of the interim research report was finalized and some dissemination strategies were considered.
IPF OCTOBER 2002 & MARCH 2003 SEMINARS
On the basis of consultations with the Budapest-based mentors (Laszlo Bruszt and Dorothee Bohle) during the October IPF seminar strategies for the development of the policy paper were designed. During the seminar the interim research report was debated in the IPF working group (Information Policy). The comments by Jerzy Celichowski of Information Program and Daniel Smilov of the Center for Policy Studies turned out to be particularly helpful and were fully incorporated into the report at a later stage of the research.
During the IPF March 2003 seminar and in cooperation with the Budapest-based mentors particular strategies for the implementation of the research's results were designed. The final results of the research were communicated to the IPF working group (Information Policy).
April, May, August, December 2002, and February 2003 were primarily devoted to field research and to further development of the structure of the final research report. In this respect, the comments by a mentor of the project (Vladimir Mlynar) were particularly valuable, as they led to a major extension of the original research project. Also, his comments on the interim research report were fully incorporated into the final research report.
In order to execute the field research, relevant persons who were identified on the basis of the knowledge acquired during the preparatory stage of the research were contacted either via e-mail or phone. Subsequently, personal, phone and e-mail interviews with these persons were completed. Due to the busy schedules of most interviewees a flexible research strategy based on more numerous visits to Prague turned out to be more appropriate than the originally scheduled three research trips. The main research trips took place in April, May, August, December 2002 and February 2003. In addition, there were also some short-term visits to Prague and one research visit to Sofia. The trip to Sofia turned out to be particularly helpful, as it provided the researcher with a possibility to compare the activities of relevant actors in the field of anticorruption in the Czech Republic with the activities of similar actors in Bulgaria. The results of this comparison inspired the final policy recommendations especially as regards the future strategy of the anticorruption struggle in the non-governmental sector.
As part of the field research one workshop, one conference, and one roundtable were attended. The minutes taken during these meetings substantially facilitated the research for the project. In addition, the conferences made it possible to meet some informants and persons relevant to the project.
COOPERATION WITH GOVERNMENTAL AND NON-GOVERNMENTAL AGENCIES
Since the beginning of the fellowship year the researcher has been in a close connection with governmental as well as non-governmental agencies. The cooperation with the state has been enhanced since a mentor of the project (Vladimir Mlynar) became Minister of Informatics in the Czech government. Further, in December 2002 the researcher received an invitation from the Ministry of Interior to cooperate on the governmental anticorruption strategy.
In the non-governmental sector the researcher has established close ties to the Czech chapter of Transparency International and the Information Program of the OSI in Budapest .
On the basis of the March IPF training, a project for the establishment of a research-focused non-governmental organization Center for Inter-Regional Analyses (CIRA) was undertaken. CIRA was registered as a civic association by the Ministry of Interior of the CR on June 5, 2002. The web presentation of CIRA is available at .
During the second half of the fellowship year an electronic database of the documents on corruption and on the use of information technologies against corruption was created. The database consists of approximately 200 documents. The database is available upon request.
B. PUBLICATION AND DISSEMINATION REPORT
Publications related to the projects are following: