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The Accountability Console is a project of the non-profit organization Accountability Counsel.
The Console transforms the transparency around harm from international finance and the accountability system to address that harm.
The interactive database contains searchable information and analytics on all complaints ever filed with the accountability offices of international financial institutions (around 1,300 cases).
The Console provides unprecedented transparency into the unintended harm caused by internationally financed projects. Its tools allow users to better understand how and why communities are harmed, and to identify the main roadblocks and bottlenecks in reaching effective remedy through accountability offices. In addition, the Console contains benchmarking tools to compare policies and practices across financial institutions, and analytics that layer complaint data onto these comparisons. Together, this information can support communities in filing more effective complaints, advocates in pushing for policy change, and investors in improving due diligence.
Examples of key users who benefit from the database include:
Communities and their Advocates
If you are seeking justice for harm caused by internationally financed projects, the Console provides unparalleled insight into what outcomes a complaint process can achieve, the limitations, and how a complaint process can differ across mechanisms. You can also access documents from complaints that led to results to inform your advocacy and learn which groups to consult for advice.
If you are advocating for stronger accountability systems, you can use the Console’s benchmarking of each IAM’s policies as the basis for evidence-driven policy recommendations to strengthen the accountability system.
Asset Owners, Managers, and Insurers
If you are seeking information about environmental, social, and governance (ESG) investment risks, the Console offers community-level feedback about negative ESG impacts from around the world in a unique data set. This ESG data is reported directly by the people experiencing negative impacts of private and public sector investments and can be searched by sector, industry, country, financing institution, project company, or corporation. The data is also instructive for Know Your Client (KYC) research.
You can access this information at two levels: in-depth documentation of harm at the project level, and/or system-wide trends about key issues raised across all relevant projects in the database.
Philanthropists and Impact Investors
If you are investing resources to create positive change, the Console provides unique insight into the social and environmental risks that could undermine your impact goals.
Many of the projects in the complaints database were supported by institutions with missions to alleviate poverty and promote sustainable development. The community complaints in this database enable you to hear feedback directly from the people affected by these projects in order to learn lessons about harm prevention (at any investment stage) and remediation, and how to apply policy frameworks in practice to improve impact.
If you are inside the operations of an IAM, the Console offers a detailed picture of how the complaints process of each accountability mechanism is functioning within the broader system. You can inform your own policies and practices by identifying factors leading to success in resolved complaints, as well as barriers in the process that prevent outcomes.
You can also see how the policies of your accountability mechanism compare to those of other IAMs, providing insight into where broader institutional policy change is needed to meet existing best practice.
Policy and Governance Decision-Makers
If you are charged with the design and oversight of a safeguards and accountability system, the Console is the only place to access a detailed view of how IAMs operate in policy and practice relative to other institutions. You can see the impact an IAM has on the deployment of a safeguards policy as it protects––or fails to protect––people and the environment in order to learn what policy and practice changes may be required.
When the Console is fully developed, you will be able to see how IAM policy variance correlates to community case outcomes. You can translate lessons from trends in the accountability system and specific case studies about harm to inform broader institutional policies and practices.
Researchers and Journalists
If you are working to understand how global financial flows affect local communities, the Console is an invaluable launching point. The complaints list enables you to identify projects causing harm that are worthy of investigation. From there, you can access direct feedback from people affected by those projects, as well as independent investigation reports and other key documents.
At a systems level, the Console provides sector and industry data, as well as information about and comparing institutions for research that can lead to broader findings.