Open and Adaptive: September reads

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Over the last five to six years I’ve collated a stash of approximately 1,700 articles relating to issues around adaptive development and open government. While this full list is stored in Evernote and can be searched by keyword and tags, I wanted to take a moment each month to highlight the articles that I found particularly useful and interesting in relation to Global Integrity’s strategy and its implementation – see here for a two page summary.

September Top Reads

  • On Think Tanks (June 2021) Proving TPA’s relevance in an increasingly autocratic world, Medium – An important piece from On Think Tanks coming out of their role in evaluating the Hewlett Foundation’s Transparency, Participation and Accountability program. I find the urge to “prove” rather than test and explore TPA’s relevance problematic, and would suggest focusing on implementation gaps and systems practice rather than choosing between, but the questions posed about whether and how TPA contributes to better development outcomes merit serious reflection (see also my feedback on the Hewlett Foundation’s evolving TPA strategy).
  • Oluwabusayomi Sotunde (August 2021) Varja Lipovsek on bringing research closer to practice, Transparency and Accountability Initiative – Another great interview by Oluwabusayomi Sotunde as part of TAI’s “Full Disclosure” series, with Varja Lipovsek reflecting on her own journey and its focus on bringing research closer to practice. The best bit, for me, is Varja’s emphasis that “to work on learning in an organization is really to work on dialogue, trust, relationships, motivations, and incentives, as much as it is on tools and data, and evidence”, and on the importance of leading with purpose. Varja’s reflections pair nicely with the listening-focused TPA Full Disclosure interview with my Bogota-based colleague Jorge Florez.

See this document for a rolling list of my favorite reads in chronological order. If you’d like access to my full Evernote Notebook, drop me a line! I’ve grouped all articles within broader themes and categories such as:

  • Systems
  • Philanthropy
  • Open Data
  • Learning
  • Fiscal Governance
  • AdaptDev
  • Corruption

For July’s Top reads, click here.

Alan Hudson
Executive Director

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