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Helping Pakistani youth demand better governance

Accountability Lab

Project type Innovation 

Country Pakistan 

Support £37,599

Country Engagement Developer Ria Ernunsari

“Democracy, by large, is more successful in those societies where the masses are politically conscious and aware of their rights as well as of their duties” — Ahmed Salim, social scientist and writer

30 million

young people live Lahore and Karachi alone



of Pakistan’s population is under the age of 24

Start date
September 2015
End date
August 2016
Period: 12 months


Across Pakistan, government at all levels is struggling to come to terms with demands from ordinary citizens who seek to challenge political elitism and have a greater say in what their government is doing.

The gap between the needs of local communities and government spending priorities is considerable, and there are few opportunities for people to hold their government officials accountable for delivering on actions they have promised.


The Accountability Lab is working with youth groups and individuals across Pakistan to help bridge some of these key gaps between communities and their representatives in government.

The first step is getting a more accurate - and accessible - picture of what is happening on the ground. The project's ‘youth accountability ambassadors’ work to gather evidence of public service delivery – both good and bad – and share what they find through blogs, photos and short videos.

Their website maps specific service delivery progress and failures regarding health, education, water and sanitation, helping ordinary people see clearly what their government is achieving on their behalf.

The second step is making sure that government is involved. The team also work with public officials, providing support for them to use the data collected in their planning, and running joint consultation meetings to help create more joint decision-making and accountability.


The Accountability Lab is an independent, non-profit organisation that partners with civil society organisations in the developing world to build sustainable tools for new and innovative approaches to bolster accountability.

The Lab acts as a sounding board, listening to, analysing and reflecting upon accountability concerns; as an independent interface, engaging relevant actors across contexts and issues; and as an operational hub, catalysing innovative, collaborative and sustainable accountability practices and communities.

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