Ask for Data

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Description

 

Ask for Data is a mobile app aimed at enhancing free access to information in Montenegro by speeding up and simplifying the process through which citizens can obtain information from public institutions.

 

Montenegro has a good law on Freedom of Information, but citizens insufficiently use this method of obtaining information of public interest. Only 17% of the population and 6% of companies have sent requests for information during the previous year. A difficult procedure is one of the reasons why citizens do not use existing mechanisms for obtaining information. Currently, in Montenegro, sending requests for access to information requires citizens to refer to the article of the law, formulate the question and send the request by mail, or personally deliver it to the institution.

 

Ask for Data aims to completely simplify this process by developing an application that will be linked to all e-mail addresses of important state and local institutions that are responsible not only for arbitrating the rights and obligations of citizens, but also for spending public funds. Through Ask for Data, users will be able to choose an institution and ask them a question by filling in a form with their name, email address, and query. The text of the email application will be adjusted to the law and citizens will be relieved of complicated procedures. Institutions would then receive the requests in the form of an email and they will answer in accordance with the statutory deadline.

 

Freedom of information is the main precondition of civic participation. By helping citizens have access to important information, Ask for Data will contribute to increasing the level of community engagement, especially of youth, business people and activists.

 

The app will be built using Adobe AIR programming languages. The Ask for Data team will cooperate with the Agency for Free Access Information to gather the contact information of institutions on the national and local levels in order to build the app.

 

 

Prototype

 

 

 

 

The Team

 

Đorđije Brkuljan is a deputy executive director of CDT. He has a longstanding experience in creating, planning and implementing different project in the area of good governance and IT technologies. Đorđije will be a coordinator of all the project activities and responsible for the cooperation and communication with the National Agency for Free Access to Information.

 

Ivana Drakić is a project coordinator in CDT. She has a great experience in the areas of good governance, transparency of institutions at national and local levels, as well as knowledge of the European and Euro-Atlantic integration of Montenegro. Ivana will be responsible for organizing “offline” promotion of this mobile application at the Faculties, communities, organizations etc.

 

Damir Dautović is an IT in CDT. He was previously engaged in different jobs in the area of information technology and online journalism. He has a professional knowledge in the area of graphic and web design, as well as the development of internet applications. In this project he will be in charge of development of the mobile application and video production.

 

JelenaTošković is a graphic designer in CDT. She has a professional knowledge in the area of graphic design. In this project she will be responsible for designing mobile applications and visual identity of promotion campaign.

 

Milica Bogdanović is ICT program coordinator and editor of CDT portal. She has a professional knowledge in the area of journalism and public relations as well as planning public campaigns. In this project she will be responsible of managing the campaign in social media.

 

Milena Gvozdenović is CDT portal journalist. She completed undergraduate and postgraduate studies at the Faculty of Political Sciences in Podgorica, Department of Journalism. She is currently attending master studies at the Faculty of Political Sciences. She will be responsible for managing the campaign in the social media.

 

 

Budget

 

$8300

Comments

Milica Kovacevic's picture
This would really simplify work of NGOs and especially think tanks who often send FOI requests to different authorities!
MilicaB's picture
Thanks :)
Tajović's picture
great idea...this can be very useful tool for free access of information is it possible to manage kind of cooperation with gvt of montenegro? it can be very good for the project
MilicaB's picture
Thank you so much.This mobile app will be linked to all e-mail addresses of important state and Montenegrin Government can take it as a useful tool that answer citizens’ requests. If you need more info about our activities in this area, see it:http://goo.gl/HYXYOZ
Bedno Piskaralo's picture
It's excellent tool for us (journalists). This mob app will speed up the process of seeking information. Great! I will download it.But I have one suggestion - you can connect the mob app with all state companies. I think it'll be good job
Tijana V's picture
Very interesting and useful tool that could be very helpful for Montenegrin citizens. There is a problem with birocracy in this country and with idea like this one, communication between citizens and institutions of Government would be a bit improved. My question is will the application already have contacts of institutions that i would like to get in touch with, or I should find their contact by myself before asking a question?
Bouthros_Ghali's picture
This app looks like a really helpful and significant tool that can create a bridge between institutions and citizens! I am really looking forward downloading it, it will speed up the process of gathering all kind of information. Great job!
Ljubica's picture
Such a great idea! This application will certainly encourage people to actually ask questions and help in solving the everlasting red tape problems in our country.
MilicaB's picture
Thanks
NemanjaB's picture
Great idea. I really like this tool. Although it seems as something that will be very useful for citizens (and especially journalists), I believe it will also be very helpful to the government institutions. Some of them are more responsive than the others, but citizens often fail to see that. This tool can easily collect data that is reliable measure of institutions' responsiveness. For example, similar tool in Slovakia, ‘a letter to a mayor’, was really successful. Nobody wants bad publicity, so Gov. institutions might actually start providing citizens with answers/feedback. I hope you will go through with this.
Boltissimo's picture
This app could really simplify access to information! Congratulations to the idea and intention to spare the citizens of complicated procedures. Could you please explain how the requested information will be provided by the institutions? Also via this app, mail or post?
stefim's picture
Practical and useful! When the app is going to be available?
ivan's picture
This will be a breakthrough in Montenegrin closed society. It will enable the citizens to have their hands on informations of their own concern as they should have.
Pjetar Djonaj's picture
Good IT tool! I saw that more than a half of the Ministries do not publish all the information on their websites. In case that the present condition is improved, that would improve this application as well, since the institutions would deliver answers in a shorter period of time.
Grdinic.Aleksandra's picture
Exelent idea!Very praticl and interesting.Are you planning to organize some promotion activities?
Deadpool's picture
This application makes civic participation more easy, and thus more necessary. It enhances control function of the civil society over the government by making it more "user friendly", as well as more accessible to each and every citizen on the level of everyday life. The application can serve as a wonderful motivator for civic participation.
Jadovan's picture
Great idea! What type of information would young people want? What would they use this information for?
MilicaB's picture
Hi! We believe it will give them the opportunity to ask the institutions about important projects (e.g. how much money is allocated for the young this year, how much for the activities of the NGO, what is the amount of the monthly earnings of the decision makers, does the municipality own premises that can be used by the young, etc.) Then, obtained information can be useful for planning their activities, preparing projects and advancement of their position in general...
Milena's picture
Tijana, thank you very much. This application will be linked to all e-mail addresses of important institutions (local and state) so you will just have to choose an institution and ask a question.
MilicaB's picture
Thank you for your questions. This mob app will include e-mail addresses of all the institutions, citizens' requests would be delivered directly to institution's e-mail address. Then, institutions would receive citizens' requests in a form of e-mail and they will send answers to the e-mail addresses of the citizens in a 15-day statutory deadline.
Gavrilo's picture
Great idea, really usefull for Montenegro citizents!
Jelena1981's picture
it is really hard to get any informations from government institutions and this app will surely help!
Bidon's picture
This app is an excellent idea considering the current state of openness of informations in Montenegro. I have a question conserning penalties if the deadline for answering the citizen question is missed, who will be incharged for that?
AnaBogavac's picture
Montenegrin citizens do not participate in everyday decision making process, because they do not understand procedures and possibilities and because there are too many obstacles to learning about them. Being cynical about state administration efficiency and having lack of trust in institutions, whilst not being familiar with amount of available data, make people not use Freedom of information law. Even journalist do not use the Law often enough, because they believe they can get data through other channels in an easier way. This app will provide people with possibility to explore what data they can ask for without putting too much effort in uncertain procedure. Learning that they can ask for great number of data in an easy way will increase number of request and improve data usage, leading to greater civic participation, but also transparency and accountability of the state authorities.
DjordjijeB's picture
Dear Bidon thank you for your question. If the deadline for answering the citizen question is missed you can fail a complain to the Agency for personal data protection and free access to information. If the Agency finds your complain plausible it will formally demand the answer from the institution and the institution will answer you.
idrakic's picture
Thank you Aleksandra, once the application is up and running, we will organize promotional activities via social networks (CDT is a leader among NGOs in Montenegro in using social media), but also through traditional electronic and printed media!
Stevan's picture
Being a student of computer sciences, I'd be happy to see the technology helping citizens to battle bureaucratic procedures.
Markisha's picture
I am certain that I will use this tool. This is great idea and I will present it to my students with great pleasure.
andjelija's picture
Allowing citizens to easily seek and receive information from public institutions will enhance fight against corruption, enable greater civic participation in public life, and make government more efficient. Great idea indeed!
Danijela's picture
Excellent idea. It is very good way to our citizens find information which they need.
Snezana's picture
Application's looking good and very useful, but how will you ensure the answers from the institutions within 15days?
Bacoole's picture
Good way to engage the community to Ask for Data.
Slaven's picture
This project is awesome!
eternala's picture
Love this one, it definitely deservs attention. Happy to see that at least some NGOs in Montenegro are geting down to the grassroots origins.
MilicaB's picture
Dear Snezana, it's statutory deadline.
Milica's picture
Good idea for more simpler way of asking for data be from institutions. Will it in some next stages be possible to ask the data from public enterprises, hospitals etc?
DjordjijeB's picture
We are hoping that we will have a chance to expand the application to other institutions.
jelena.milica's picture
Great engine !
Sahta's picture
I would agree with Gavrilo. Great idea!
blabla's picture
great idea! tnx for everything!
nikolam's picture
Great idea. I really like this tool. It could be very helpful for Montenegrin citizens.
poofy29's picture
great idea !!
aleks13's picture
Pretty well imagined project, hope it will be realized :)
duski's picture
I will use this app for sure! I already need it.
ETC MNE's picture
Great idea and tool to make our lives and work easier!
Sladjana's picture
Hope that you will realize this idea, sounds great!
Vera's picture
A lot of people cannot cope with such procedures so this will be sooo useful. Good job :)
nina.mar's picture
Finally someone remembered! Good luck!
marina_du's picture
It's very attractive and innovative design of the mob apps. I think you can find similar site for FOI on: https://www.mysociety.org/projects/freedom-of-information/whatdotheyknow/
Miles's picture
I am already looking forward to using this innovative application in the country where administrative processes are real nightmare. Well done and good luck!

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I'm ICT program coordinator and editor of CDT portal. I have been working at the organization...
Project coordinator in NGO Center for Democratic Transition from Montenegro, mostly dealing with...
Student
I work as a journalist for CDT’s website since October 2014. I previously did an internship in...
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