The proposed approach aims to build on the existing SOURCE platform, Open Contracting for Infrastructure Data Standard (OC4IDS) and CoST global good practice to develop a comprehensive digital solution for governments, and one which covers the full project cycle from inception to completion:
● SOURCE is the multilateral platform for quality infrastructure led and funded by multilateral development banks (MDBs)1 . It is an online digital platform that provides i) a set of sectorial templates and guidance to support project developers from project definition to implementation, ii) a project management solution to monitor the project's progress, track schedule and assess readiness and iii) a framework to collect and analyze structured, standardized, machine readable data at the project and portfolio levels.
● Open Contracting Partnership (OCP) enables the publication and use of structured, standardized, machine readable data that is both easy to understand and easy to use. This in turn, enables responsive governments to identify and fix problems. The Open Contracting for Infrastructure Data Standard (OC4IDS) describes what information to disclose and how to disclose it, at each stage of an infrastructure project. It connects previously siloed information to better publish and track infrastructure investment and delivery, providing data at the project level, at the contracting summary level, and at contract process detail level. A joint effort by CoST – the Infrastructure Transparency Initiative and the Open Contracting Partnership, it builds on best practice in open data and openness of public infrastructure procurement globally.
● CoST works with governments, industry and civil society to promote the disclosure of data on public and public/private investment in infrastructure. This enables citizens to hold decision-makers to account, helps to reduce losses through corruption, mismanagement and inefficiency and contributes to better quality infrastructure and services. CoST develops tools and standards to support this process including the OC4IDS (in partnership with OCP), the System of Information and Monitoring of Works and Supervision Contracts (SISOCS), and a data analytic dashboard pioneered by CoST Ukraine.
The proposal aims to leverage the strengths and capabilities of each tool to provide an integrated solution to governments. Three key outputs have been identified:
i) The alignment of SOURCE with OC4IDS and CoST recommendations, as well as connecting SOURCE to "ProZorro" (Ukraine's local e-procurement platform which is modelled on the Open Contracting Data Standard (OCDS);
ii) The implementation of the streamlined digital solution in Ukraine, as part of the on-going commitments of all parties in the country; and
iii) The development of a standardised process and methodology to enable replicability in other countries and regions.
To achieve these outputs, as OCP, CoST and SIF use similar strategies for integration and technical assistance in developing countries, all organizations will follow a joint approach to align SOURCE with OC4IDS, drawing from the data available on or through ProZorro and CoST anti-corruption best practices. This will promote greater transparency and accountability in public procurement for infrastructure projects.
The proposed components of the approach will therefore be:
Component 1. Develop a streamlined digital solution for infrastructure by aligning SOURCE with OC4IDS and CoST guidance as well as connecting to local e-procurement platforms (building on open contracting standards and principles). SOURCE will conduct this by:
● Aligning SOURCE governance templates with Open Contracting's OC4IDS, CoST recommendations and other relevant standards
● Building institutional collaboration, guidance and transparency through existing management features on SOURCE (transparency of project information (history overview and document repository), consistency checks (flags on project preparation and procurement), timeline management (visibility on procurement delays and throughout the entire cycle), team management functionalities, etc.)
● Designing an implementation strategy for system connectivity through an Application Programming Interface (API).
Component 2. Validate the digital solution in Ukraine:
● The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is working with SIF to integrate the use of SOURCE platform as the project preparation platform in Ukraine for infrastructure in all government agenices. By aligning SOURCE with OC4IDS and CoST best practice, vital project and contract data will be published. This means that anti-corruption measures and transparency will be implemented from early preparation stages of infrastructure projects.
● SOURCE will be thus connected to ProZorro's e-procurement system and linked to the Business Intelligence for Infrastructure dashboard developed by CoST. When a project is published by the project coordinator and launched for tender, the relevant data for procurement collected into SOURCE will automatically transferred to Prozorro via an API. In addition, once the tender process is finalized, the data will be displayed on the MS Power BI dashboard developed by CoST.
Component 3. Replicate strategy through the Knowledge iLab acceleration programme:
● The integration of SOURCE into national frameworks and existing open contracting procurement platforms and CoST dashboards will support the IMF strategy and its efforts to fight corruption and promote good governance in public procurement.
● Following the outcomes and learnings from the implementation in Ukraine, we are eager to scale up the solution in other countries such as Philippines, Uzbekistan, Costa Rica, Mauritius, Ecuador. This will be done together with iLab, to foster longer term and sustained partnership with the IMF.
OCP has also submitted a separate proposal related to public procurement. Although the proposals are separate and stand alone, it is worth noting that the approaches are complementary. This joint proposal with OCP and CoST is specifically focused on infrastructure and will provide much needed depth for the trillion-dollar infrastructure sector. It is unique because it combines three internationally recognised initiatives from CoST, OCP and SIF to deliver a cogent, streamlined approach for infrastructure. Crucially, it also links to Prozorro, a state-of the-art, award winning e-procurement platform based on open contracting. This means that silos will be broken down, enabling joined up data and more effective monitoring.
1 As of now, the SOURCE Council is composed of the African Development Bank (observer), the Asian Development Bank, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, European Investment Bank, InterAmerican Development Bank (IADB) and the World Bank Group.