Background: Why has the PWYP Secretariat re-structured?

PWYP is a registered charity (Registered Charity Number 117095). From 2002 until August 2015, the Secretariat of the Publish What You Pay coalition was hosted by the London office of the Open Society Foundations (OSF). As part of its own internal restructuring, OSF asked the Secretariat in 2013 to explore alternatives to this arrangement. On the recommendation of the PWYP Global Steering Committee (GSC), a consultant was recruited to explore various options which he did in discussion with Secretariat staff, the Africa Steering Committee (ASC), the GSC, key members of the coalition and our host organisation. His recommendation to register as a UK charity was adopted by the GSC and ASC at their joint meeting in August 2014 in Washington DC.

Why is PWYP registered as a UK charity?

PWYP is registered as a charity in the UK due to the high levels of transparency required in line with the PWYP strategic pillar Practice What We Preach. The decision to register as a charity was based on a recommendations adopted by the GSC and ASC, and following a consultation process with the global coalition. The principal reasons for this decision are:

Further details of the consultant’s findings and recommendations can be found in the minutes of the GSC/ASC meeting held in Washington DC in August 2014.

How has the global coalition been consulted?

To meet the legal obligations of registration in the UK, a governance structure was set up. To facilitate and monitor this process on behalf of the global coalition, a small Transition Committee was established in August 2014 and consisted of four members of the previous GSC: Taran Diallo (PWYP Guinea), Ian Gary (Oxfam America), Suneeta Kaimal (NRGI) and Cecilia Mattia (PWYP Sierra Leone).

Based on their initial work the Transition Committee, a consultant and Secretariat worked together to carry out a consultation with the global coalition on the proposed governance structure. This consultation was carried out between December 2014 and late January 2015 and the document is available online. All the coalitions were contacted through the regional list serves, as well as individually by their Regional Coordinator and/or the PWYP International Director. A total of 21 responses were received and a summary of the feedback is also available.

After having reviewed and incorporated the feedback, and in-line with their mandate, the Transition Committee approved the governance structure outlined in detail in the PWYP Governance Manual. The final validation took place at the April 2015 meeting of the Global Steering Committee. The governance structure will be subject to a review clause in 2017-2018 to assess its effectiveness. It is important to note that governance remains a work in progress and therefore the document should be seen as a living one which we can revise as we continue the PWYP journey towards Vision 20/20.