Accelerate Performance is proud to partner with Results Leadership Group to bring the first ever Results-Based Accountability TM (RBA) Africa Summit 2014 in Johannesburg from 8-10 October. The conference is aimed at introducing Results-Based Accountability ™ methodologies and software to leaders in governments and non-profit organisations (NPOs) in Africa, helping them achieve measurable results and accountability. Key ideas of the RBA™ methodologies include:
- making a clear distinction between accountability for whole populations, which require numerous partners versus accountability for the service delivery of singular programs,
- Helping single organisations create better performance measures by helping them answer three questions: How much do we do? How well do We Do It? Is anyone better off?; and
- Turn the Curve Thinking™, which is a data-driven decision making application that uses a series of questions to help communities and organisations.
As South Africa looks beyond the 20 years of democracy, accountability should be a key area of focus for leaders and organisations alike. As much as 20 years of freedom is a major and important theme in South Africa today, it is also an opportunity for citizens to reflect on how far the country has come in meeting set goals; and if the officials and departments responsible for the implementation have accounted for their roles in the prevailing status? Post democracy leaders of the country have worked tireslessly to draft policy documents and legislations aimed at improving the lives of the South Africans; and palatable economic indicators. While some ground has been covered in the last 20 years, as South Africa approaches its fifth democratic election it is apparent that the country continues to face some challenges. More specifically, basic constitutional rights such as education, primary healthcare and employment remain at unsatisfactory levels while poor results go unaccounted for. A closer look will show that while economic growth has surpassed population growth since 1994, South Africa’s unemployment rate remains very high. Even with the marginal improvement of 0.5% year-on-year from 2012 to 2013, informal employment continues to be low, without recovering from the 2009 pre-crisis levels. Where there has been improvement in job creation, this can be attributed to a well performing economy and sophisticated legal and financial systems. South Africa’s employment picture therefore points to poor use of data for decision-making and action planning. Notably, the South African Government, together with its partners has failed to deliver on one million jobs in the last five years, and is expected to further disappoint in creating five million job by the year 2020. While we cannot turn back the clock to our past failures as government, private sector, NPOs and government agencies, history need not repeat itself with future goals. South Africa, like the rest of the continent and other emerging economies, has great potential to create a thriving competitive economy and meet its employment targets; but when government institutions and partners struggle to facilitate this because of poor consultative processes, the tangible results will not be achieved. Therefore, the urgent quantum leap needed in this regard is Results-Based Accountability TM. It will place government and partners on the front foot as it leans on methods that use data-driven and transparent decision making tools to achieve measurable results. Commenting on Results-Based AccountabilityTM, Laureen Rwatirera, Senior Consultant at Accelerate Performance said, “A key principle of RBA™ is that multiple partners have joint accountability. Governments, State-owned companies and non-profit organisations around the world all struggle to meet their ambitious goals. While this may be a factor of a number of variables, it is typically as a result of poor accountability practices that include not using data to create clear and transparent actions to turn those curves. In the case of the South Africa, in the recently launched National Development Plan, government understands the end goal but do they fully understand what is needed to transition and achieve that goal? What are the indicators of success? What is the analysis for why the data is trending the direction it is currently trending? Who are the partners they have and the partners they need? What is working locally and in other parts of the world? And finally, what is the strategy and implementation plan to create measurable change? It may be that some but not all of these questions can be answered with conviction and certainty. However, if government, their respective ministries and partners are not well equipped on how to drive accountability using similar lines of thinking to the questions above, history will unfortunately repeat itself, carving deeper into the past before the 20 years of democracy. Non-delivery and failure to achieve measurable improvements is not unique to South Africa but rather a global issue. However, non-profit organisations, governments and the state institutions the world over that have applied Results-Based AccountabilityTM methods have been able to improve their delivery on mandates, track performance using data and put accountability measures in place,” concluded Rwatirera. Governments and NPOs in sub-Saharan Africa can also benefit from the Results-Based AccountabilityTM (RBA) methods. The RBA Africa Summit 2014 will bring together experts in training and implementation, introducing them to cutting edge RBA concepts that are helping governments and NPOs create measurable improvements across the globe and impacting children, families and communities. Additionally, conference delegates will:
- Learn and interact first hand with Mark Friedman, founder of Results-Based Accountability TM and the author of Trying Hard is Not Good Enough
- Participate in keynote presentations from the world’s leading Results-Based Accountability TM experts & practitioners and government leaders and legislators from Europe, Australia, New Zealand and United States, giving an account and empirical evidence of their experience with RBA in their respective organisations; and
- Join interactive workshops and network in smaller sector specific groups, co-creating strategies relevant to improve results in government and non-profits
About RBA Africa Summit 2014 Results Leadership Group, with offices in the United States and Australia, and Accelerate Performance, with offices in South Africa, will host Results-Based Accountability™ (RBA) Africa Summit 2014 in Johannesburg South Africa. The Summit will introduce cutting edge RBA concepts to conference delegates which will comprise of leaders from government and non-profit organisations as well as experts in training and implementation in Africa. This summit will feature introductory training from Mark Friedman, the creator of RBA and author of the book Trying Hard is Not Good Enough. There will also be live panels, break-out sessions led by leaders on the front lines, and facilitated learning sessions on how to use RBA for creating impact on what you care about most.