Unveiling our Areas of Expertise: 5 great themes for GPG’s work

In anticipation of the forthcoming launch of our new website, GPG is delighted to share with you the 5 Areas of Expertise we drew out to be our platform’s navigational pillars. Those 5 themes emerged from examining the work GPG has conducted throughout the years to support politicians, ministers, and civil servants worldwide to improve the quality and effect of their political institutions. The areas are as follows:

Parliamentary innovation and assistance 

The purpose of strengthening representative politics is to improve the quality of people’s lives by ensuring governance institutions – including parliaments, ministries, and political parties – design better policy, draft better legislation, and deliver better services for their citizens. Rather than treating these tasks as separate and siloed activities, GPG’s pioneering methodology allows us to operate at multiple levels of government to ensure that each step of the ‘policy-legislation-service-delivery’ path is connected to the others. Our approach relies on Politically Agile Programming and on our KAPE® (knowledge-application-practice-effect) methodology for ‘sticky change’. Our programmes draw extensively on behavioural insights to help politicians manage the immediate problems and pressing daily challenges they face inside government, in a way which also strengthens those political institutions in the long run. 

In Jordan, GPG supported more efficient structures in parliament, reducing the time required for legislation to pass into law. We improved working practices between the government and parliament, built capacity to implement decentralisation through a new tier of regional government, and provided assistance to parliamentary committees on consultative inquiries. We also introduced post-legislative scrutiny (PLS) techniques to monitor the effects of legislation and whether it is meeting its objectives, partly through a newly established PLS staff unit.  

Local development & decentralisation  

Decentralisation is increasingly recognised internationally as essential for good governance. Done well, it leads to greater participation, greater efficiency, and greater diversity. Local empowerment is thus a fundamental building block of a successful representative political system. GPG has provided support in a range of parliaments around the world to design and implement effective decentralisation reform, usually operating at three levels: 

  • Supporting strategic planning to decentralise and devolve authority to the local level,  
  • Ensuring that local/regional authorities have the skills, capacity, and resources to implement the strategy; 
  • Providing direct support to local staff and politicians in order to establish inclusive mechanisms to set local priorities and practical ways to improve service delivery. 

In Tanzania, GPG held a role in DfID’s (Department for International Development) Institutions for Inclusive Development (I4ID) programme and helped strengthen democratic institutions and governance to make them more inclusive, accountable, and able to get economic growth to profit people living in poverty. GPG worked with Members of Parliament (MPs) in their constituencies to develop better approaches to service delivery for local people and address some of the most pressing issues such as water provision, healthcare, and access to economic markets. 

Politics, youth, and gender representation  

Around the world, women and youth are under-represented at every level in politics. This inadequate representation distorts the way in which policy is formulated, depriving decision-makers of vital evidence and expertise. GPG’s skilled and experienced Associates help women and young people seek, obtain, and retain political power.  

GPG’s projects have involved direct coaching and advice for women to develop and share the skills they need to access and hold leadership positions both within and beyond political parties. This included creating or supporting internal political party mechanisms to provide support for women candidates and foster a pipeline of future candidates. We also engaged with youth representative structures by supporting youth presence in political office and decision-making at all levels and by developing inclusive and transparent processes which allow young people and their representatives to participate in the planning of their living environment. Finally, we seek to encourage the mainstreaming of practices and policies which are designed with the inclusion of women and youth in mind. 

To promote female political participation in Lebanon, Global Partners Governance, alongside our Lebanese partners LOST (Lebanese Organization for Studies and Training) and the international expertise of Atalanta, built and led our Winning with Women project, designed to identify and train potential female leaders and encourage them to run for office. Together we offered a distinctive approach to gender programming combining innovative, highly specialised international expertise with existing local political engagement. At the end of the training programme, participants shared very positive feedback with us and added that they noticed clear improvement in their own knowledge and capacity to move forward. 

Politics of anti-corruption  

Within many legislatures, corruption is a persistent issue which restricts economic growth and hinders the equal distribution of its benefits. Through GPG’s unique peer-to-peer approach, our expert Associates collaborate with reform-minded MPs to understand and improve standards of ethical conduct within legislative bodies. We identify target values and key issues for politicians when developing, implementing, and enforcing reform. We know that behavioural change is a complex process sustained over long timeframes. As a result, we focus on identifying examples of possible changes at the individual level and how those contribute to building pockets of good practice at the institutional level.  

GPG partnered with the Kuwait National Anti-Corruption Authority (Nazaha) to support long-term change in Kuwait, as Nazaha seeks to lay the foundations for a more ethical culture of integrity and to improve public trust in state institutions. GPG has provided international expertise on Freedom of Information laws, including through a series of webinar sessions bringing together over 160 participants from 60 government agencies and continues to support the efforts around the mainstreaming of Freedom of Information across the Kuwaiti administration. GPG also provides technical support to the work on Nazaha’s strategic priorities around the development of Codes of Conduct for Parliamentary staff and Members of Parliament. 

Politics of anti-modern slavery  

Human trafficking threatens not only the individual’s safety, but also the stability of entire regions. Its effects are felt transnationally and reinforce a feedback loop of political and economic instability. To help tackle this immense challenge, GPG builds on extensive expertise in supporting the implementation of anti-Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking measures alongside governments of the Middle East & North Africa region and beyond. We assist efforts to develop and review legislation tackling human trafficking, produces research and analysis, and seeks to build synergies within the affected regions in which we work.  

In Sudan, GPG has been working to support Sudan’s approach to combatting human trafficking at the international, national, and sub-national level. GPG has been working with the National Committee to Counter Trafficking (NCCT) within the Ministry of Justice in Sudan to support their efforts in tackling this issue and pushing human trafficking as a priority human rights issue in the ‘New Sudan’ agenda. The work with the NCCT has focused on identifying the challenges on the current 2014 Combatting of Human Trafficking Act and supporting the creation of a subcommittee within the NCCT dedicated to do review of the legislation and ensure its effectiveness. GPG has also focused on supporting the NCCT efforts to coordinate with states on their response to trafficking, as well as the reporting requirements the NCCT faces as the highest institution responsible for the country’s work to combat human trafficking.  

Those 5 key areas are the backbone of our work and resonate throughout our catalogue of expertise and resources. We invite you to visit our website to discover our publications, podcasts, and insight, and to keep an eye out for the imminent launch of our brand-new platform!