Believing that good governance is essential for successful development, ARIJ has embarked on the field of good governance, realizing that sustainable utilization of scarce natural recourses requires serious efforts to address current governance challenges facing the Palestinian community, whether at civil society, local authority or governmental level. Thus ARIJ Good Governance Program ARIJ aims to promote values of integrity, principles of transparency and systems of accountability in the various Palestinian sectors.
Among the several elements of good governance, ARIJ focuses on applying participatory, transparent and accountable, effective and equitable approaches to development. As such, the program’s main objective is to ensure that political, social and economic priorities are based on broad consensus in the Palestinian society and that the voices of the poorest and the most vulnerable are heard in decision-making over the allocation of development resources.
To achieve this objective ARIJ good governance team works with civil society organizations empowering them to install and follow good governance practices in order to fulfill their mission in helping the communities in which they operate. ARIJ team also works with local civil societies to improve the accountability of key local authorities and help these local state institutions become more responsive to community needs. In relation to community participation ARIJ good governance team works to provide and develop the capacities of local and national authorities with the required support to create more sustainable communities by applying an integrated and participatory approach to local policy making. Not only does ARIJ good governance initiative involve public and civil society sectors, but ARIJ also encourages the private sector companies to take part in the development process by engaging in a real partnership with the civil society and public sector organizations.
In addition to holding workshops, public hearings, accountability sessions, and focus groups meetings, the program’s activities involve training different target groups to advocate for good governance policies in their localities. And as it is the case with other ARIJ programs, ARIJ interventions include the preparation of special researches and case studies linking local governance changes with local development outcomes. Thus, ARIJ is reaching the public, as well as, decision makers with visible information, pushing forward the political debate and raising awareness of the importance of adopting fair policies in relation to national issues like water, pollution, rural and urban development, democracy and empowerment of the local communities.