What we do
UNDP assists Georgia to consolidate democracy, promote reforms and ensure the protection of human rights and liberties. International expertise and thorough understanding of local environment helps us bring people together, foster partnerships and promote participation, accountability and effectiveness at all levels. We work with a wide range of partners, including Government, Parliament, justice system, civil society, academic institutions, private sector, international organizations and the media, targeting key areas of Georgia’s democratic transformation:
- Professional and effective public sector
- Gender equality
- Regional and local development
- Decentralization and local self-governance
- Strong Parliament
- Human rights and fundamental freedoms
- Access to justice
- Credible and transparent elections
- Professional and independent media
- Active civil society
- Open and secure borders
In 2011, Georgia joined the Open Government Partnership (OGP), an international platform that unites 75 countries to help their governments become more open, accountable, and responsive to citizens. In 2015, this was followed by the endorsement of the Declaration on Parliamentary Openness by the Parliament of Georgia, adoption of the country’s first legislative openness action plan, and the acknowledgement of the Georgian Parliament with the Champions’ Award at the OGP global summit. In May 2016, Georgia, together with France, became a Co -Chair of the OGP Steering Committee and, in September 2017, assumed the OGP chairing role for a year. UNDP strongly supports Georgia’s efforts to achieve transparency, openness and citizen engagement in governance and law-making. Our EU-funded programmes for parliamentary democracy, human rights and access to justice, help connect citizens to policy makers and ensure transparency and accountability of the Parliament and government agencies.
Decentralisation and Local Self-Governace
Georgia is reforming its local self-governance, aiming to increase decision-making powers and financial resources of the regional and local authorities. By 2025, the country plans to raise the consolidated financial resource of the municipalities to at least 7% of GDP. UNDP, with funds from the governments of Austria and Switzerland, is supporting Georgia in this ambitious reform. We help the country implement its new vision of decentralization and local self-governance, while focusing on local economic development, engagement of citizens in decision-making and the increased competence of local civil servants.
Innovation for Development
Georgia’s growth dynamics makes innovation a critical catalyst of the country’s rapid democratic transformation. UNDP is assisting to design, pilot and introduce innovative solutions in different reform areas, especially in public service delivery, public administration reform, gender equality and urban development. In 2014, we helped establish the innovation ServiceLab at the Public Service Development Agency (PSDA) under the Ministry of Justice of Georgia. The ServiceLab is a unique space for innovative experiments towards reinventing public services. It facilitates engagement between diverse groups of people and decision-makers, fosters partnerships and builds external and internal innovation expertise. In 2018, our cooperation with the ServiceLab led to the establishment of Innovations Hub at the Rustavi City Hall. Focusing on the collaborative governance models, the Hub promotes innovation in local service delivery and supports public-private partnership and citizen-driven local governance initiatives.
Human Rights for All
The national Human Rights Strategy and Action Plan 2014-2020 is a strategic framework for protecting fundamental human rights and liberties in Georgia. UNDP partners with the European Union and three UN agencies – UNICEF, OHCHR and ILO, to support the country in its implementation. Our assistance focuses on the priority areas of the EU-Georgia agreements, such as: the rights of minorities and vulnerable groups, internal and external oversight of law enforcement, labour rights, protection of privacy, and freedom of expression and information.
Georgia still struggles to achieve meaningful gender equality in politics, economy and social life. The latest parliamentary (2016) and local (2017) elections left the country with only 15% women MPs, less than 14% of women in local councils and only one woman out of 64 directly elected mayors. Furthermore, Georgia faces around 35% gender pay gap and alarming statistics of gender-based violence. To help the country overcome gender equality challenges, three UN agencies (UNDP, UN Women and UNFPA), supported by the Government of Sweden, work together in three main areas: (1) political and economic empowerment of women, (2) elimination of gender-based violence, and (3) realization of sexual and reproductive rights.
Georgia’s vibrant, diverse and polarised media environment plays an increasingly important role in the political, economic and social life of the country. The European Union and UNDP are supporting professional media monitoring as the way to promote media diversity, increase journalistic standard and build watchdog functions of civil society, especially at a time of elections. During the seven major elections in Georgia in 2010 – 2018, our media research has examined impartiality and balance of election reporting in the national and regional broadcast, print and online media with the incremental successes evident in the field.