The Framework is the result of cooperation between government, local communities and the Collaboration. It integrates group member Sipho Mwanza’s AI powered data platform Rural Senses. The platform was designed to support local government by ensuring that projects submitted for the constituency development fund represent the community’s needs and build on their existing strengths, in alignment with the values and priorities of the country. It also aims to ensure that the concerns of underserved communities are heard. This approach reinforces accountability and transparency when it comes to project selection for the authorities. But it also ensures that community members are able to monitor projects themselves.
Seeking partnerships to scale
Sipho Mwanza, of Open Net 4.0 Zambia, saw an opportunity to use this approach in his country when the allocation of Constituency Development Funds was recently increased, requiring heightened scrutiny of the fund’s expenditure.
The Framework was demonstrated during Catalysing Change Week 2022, with a catalytic grant from Catalyst 2030 helping to launch the project. The collaboration now awaits final approval from the national government to begin action on the ground. They hope to scale their framework by attracting partner funders during Catalysing Change Week 2023.