What we want to know

We want to know how citizens can use the Freedom of Information mechanism better to access public contracting data.

Research Background

Why is this important?

The Government of the Philippines operationalized people’s access to information through Executive Order (EO) Number 2 signed by the President in July 2016. While covering only the executive branch of the government, it allowed different users, currently numbering 4,157 (as of December 17, 2018 statistics), access to key government information, managed through a program team housed under the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO). 

At the same time, the Philippine government maintains an open data portal but this initiative has stagnated since 2017. Previously available contracting data can no longer be found in the portal. Currently, the only recourse for researchers and journalists to access contracting data is through the FOI mechanism.  To know how this mechanism can be maximized in order to answer key questions on public contracts is important.

What are our key research questions?

Barriers to public contracting information provision

What are the barriers that make the provision of contracting data difficult to FOI requesters?

Institutional and system gaps impacting information provision

What are the gaps in data management systems and agency processes that hinder the provision of contracting data to potential users?

Opportunities for better access to contracting information

What opportunities are available in terms of hastening people’s access to contracting data using the FOI mechanism?

What have we done so far?