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IDB launches “Gobernarte” contest for the best government programs

The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) launched "Gobernarte: The Art of Good Government," a contest that will recognize the best examples of innovation in public administration in states, provinces, regions, and other subnational entities in Latin America and the Caribbean.

The Gobernarte contest will be carried out over three years with a specific thematic focus for each year. In its first year, the IDB will make awards available for six innovations in two categories:

  • Government Security: preventing crime and violence.
  • Smart Government: eliminating red tape for citizens and companies.

As countries increasingly decentralize the delivery of government services to its citizens, states and provinces must address complex issues such as violence and the need to eliminate excessive bureaucratic red tape. At the same time, citizens are demanding better government services.

Latin America and the Caribbean also are experiencing a wave of violence. Countries are responding with citizen security programs that include different approaches to the problem, such as rehabilitation, community policing, and the needs of youth, among others.

While Latin America still has excessive bureaucracy and unnecessary delays in carrying out administrative procedures, a number of leaders in the region have implemented innovative programs that use technology to accelerate the process of approval and delivery of services.

"Through Gobernarte we wish to identify and reward innovative best practices in government management, and document and disseminate these experiences, so that we may learn from them," said IDB President Luis Alberto Moreno. "Clearly, our lives will improve as our public institutions become more creative, intelligent, open, and effective."

Provinces and other subnational levels of government have until September 15 to submit their projects on the Gobernarte website. A panel of internationally recognized experts will select the three winners in each category.

The competition is open to subnational government jurisdictions, such as states, regions, departments, provinces, and others. The competition does not include municipal governments.

Applicants can learn if they meet contest requirements on the website. Inquiries can be made ​​at

The panel will announce the winners by the end of the year and the Bank will document and disseminate their innovations through an information campaign as well as on the web.

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