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Action Voices: Bridging Ghana’s governance divide

Advocacy & Media Support Foundation

“Ghana has one of the most beautifully framed decentralization concepts but sadly it has not produced the best of results due to a number of factors, one being a lack of communication systems between the assemblies and the citizens.” — Action Voices


Ghana’s score for public participation in the 2015 Open Budget Index

Start date
November 2015
End date
April 2017
Period: 18 months


Over the last 20 years, Ghana’s government has moved a lot of decision-making powers to the local level making it easier for citizens to participate in local policy. Currently however, there is no effective platform for communication between the Assemblies and citizens.

Assemblies do not share information and citizens have no platform to give feedback, with the result that Assemblies make decisions about social development without knowing and understanding citizens’ needs.



The Action Voices project develops an online platform to systematically improve communication between local government and citizens in Ghana. The team aims to use the platform to equip civil society, the media and citizens with information through which they can better hold government to account.

The project operates in three phases:

  • First, using toll free-services in local languages, the team will build up a picture of key concerns to citizens in the project area
  • Second, based on this information, the project will work with open source data on these issues
  • Third, they will work with media and civil society organisations to publicise public concerns, discuss what information is known about these issues and provide local government actors with a resource, and platform, to help them more directly understand and address citizen needs


The team of Action Voices was one of the winners of The Global Innovation Competition 2015, organised by Making All Voices Count. The team has conducted several small scale media and governance projects, and has previously handled funding from the German Agency for International Cooperation (GIZ).