Embracing Transparency and Openness: Lessons from the Pandemic and the Latin-American Network for Legislative Transparency
About the Latin-American Network for Legislative Transparency. Written on March, 2021
The COVID-19 pandemic has made the world realize the importance of technology on a massive scale. Millions of students continued their education through digital platforms, businesses adopted remote working, and families maintained connections despite the distance. Governments and their institutions, including parliaments, had to adapt to this new reality as well. This essay discusses the importance of transparency in legislative power, using examples from Mexico and the Latin-American Network for Legislative Transparency.
The State of Digital Advancement in Legislative Institutions
The pandemic revealed that the level of digital advancement of legislative institutions was lacking, particularly in developing countries and at the subnational level. Some parliaments were able to quickly adapt to virtual plenary and committee sessions, while others struggled due to insufficient infrastructure and internet access.
Mexico's Federal Senate and the Lower House of Congress, for example, had relatively advanced digital procedures, allowing them to quickly adapt to the new reality. However, the local Congress of Mexico City experienced a significant halt in activities due to their reliance on physical documents and lack of digitalization.