The Zambia Accountability Programme (ZAP) is working to increase accountability in the delivery of public goods and services. Through technical assistance and grant mechanisms to partners, the programme aims to ensure that public policy and democratic processes are more credible, inclusive and transparent, and represent citizens' interests. Particular emphasis is placed on promoting gender equality and social inclusion including strengthening the livelihoods of the most vulnerable, supporting girls to remain in school, and increasing women’s representation in political processes.

The programme uses a robust framework to monitor, evaluate and learn from its results. It supports evidence-based learning and dialogue within and between public and private stakeholders to show how citizens can benefit from more inclusive development. 

Areas of work

We work across three thematic areas to identify issues where the potential is highest to mobilise a broad range of interests behind change. 

1. Service Delivery

We work to improve access to secondary education for girls through budgetary support to education non-governmental organisations and strengthen engagement on policy formulation and delivery.

2. Political Processes and Institutions of Democracy

We work to enhance the engagement between political parties, citizens and the government to ensure a conducive environment for citizens to exercise their right to vote.

3. Inclusive Growth

We work to increase civil society, private sector and elected representative engagement in the delivery of public good and services, and in the development and diversification of productive sectors.

Our approach

Our programmes of support focus on inclusion and empower people and organisations that are often disadvantaged in society. Our grants encourage innovation and creativity in civil society organisations, to develop capacity, and foster collaboration and collective action among various stakeholders, including government and the private sector.

Particular emphasis is placed on supporting gender equality and empowerment. We recognise that for accountability to benefit women and other marginalised groups, they must fully participate in public-decision making and hold those responsible to account when their rights are infringed or their needs ignored. We address this across three key areas: mandates, procedures and culture/attitudes.

The programme uses a robust framework to monitor, evaluate and learn from its results. It supports evidence-based learning and dialogue within and between civil society, government and private sector stakeholders to show how they can benefit from and contribute to sustainable development.

Equitable management of public goods – What do we mean?

  • The application of a clear and transparent set of rules that are aligned with social norms
  • Accountability of service providers in a way that drives performance – top-down bureaucratic discipline in combination with participation of actual and potential beneficiaries
  • Responsiveness to the needs of women and vulnerable groups in equal measure with those in society more able to negotiate access

ZAP is funded with UK aid from the UK government and managed by the British Council.