March 1, 2024

Partnering with civil society for accountability

Call with CSO


This January, the Accountability Mechanism (AM) was pleased to engage in a lively discussion with 64 local, regional, and international representatives from civil society organizations (CSOs), as part of the year’s first World Bank CSO monthly call.

Each month, the CSO call focuses on a different topic of interest to the CSO community. The theme of the January call was accountability, with Orsolya Székely, Secretary of the Accountability Mechanism, as the featured guest. Sanjeeta Pant, program manager for the global translocal network Accountability Lab, provided context on the importance of accountability to her CSO’s mission, followed by questions and comments from the participating CSO representatives.

The discussion highlighted a few critical issues, including:

  • The difficulty in reaching affected communities with information about the Accountability Mechanism  so that they can file a complaint and how civil society is engaged in efforts to overcome this barrier.
  • The challenge for accountability mechanisms to maintain independence and confidentiality about ongoing investigations or mediation processes, while simultaneously sharing information and lessons learned for future cases.
  • The value of developing trust with communities in an environment in which threats and reprisals can inhibit efforts towards accountability.

Székely emphasized the need to be positive when looking toward the future—and that accountability shouldn’t be resisted. Correcting mistakes, she said, can be forthcoming and voluntary: “I hope we get there one day.”

The Accountability Mechanism looks forward to participating in more events with CSOs throughout the year and welcomes their voice and perspective on how to best engage with communities to achieve our joint agenda of accountability.


One of the most important functions of the Accountability Mechanism is to reach out to communities affected by Bank-funded projects and communicate about the options available to them through the mechanism. Among our various outreach efforts, we organize in-country and virtual events to reach communities, often in collaboration with other independent accountability mechanisms (IAMs) and with civil society organizations (CSOs). If you are interested in partnering on future workshops, please email us at accountability@worldbank.org.

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