Date Completed: January 2018
Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality (NMBM) agreed to be the first city to test the
Integrity and Social Accountability Self-Assessment tool being developed through the
CSP InTAcT project.
NMBM appointed a team comprising two senior councillors and two senior managers to work with the InTAcT team. A self-assessment questionnaire was completed and an online perception survey was circulated to relevant staff. An intensive three-day visit was then held from 4-6 December 2017 where the team had a series of meetings and focus groups with officials, councillors and some external stakeholders such as the business chamber.
The team presented its initial conclusions to the Executive Mayor and City Manager. The team thereafter completed a report with detailed recommendations regarding key infrastructure and land development processes and integrity and social accountability performance. An improvement plan was workshopped in January 2018. The report and improvement plan have been submitted to NMBM.
The Self-Assessment concluded that NMBM had achieved solid levels of legal
compliance in its core prioritisation, procurement, permissions and performance
processes particularly where there were strong legislative regimes in place.
Organisational culture and the need to move beyond compliance to creating a culture
of professionalism across the organisation was highlighted as a key issue. This
suggests that leadership development at all levels and change management are key
interventions going forward.
In regard to integrity, the exercise also highlighted the importance not only of improving internal systems but of also engaging more proactively with suppliers and stakeholders regarding the importance of ethical engagement. In regard to social accountability, the potential to use a much larger set of tools was highlighted particularly those that empowered communities to engage more effectively and that increased the ability of communities and citizens to influence decision-making in a positive way.
“The self-assessment has been very helpful in surfacing and documenting critical issues which we were probably aware of but had not been pushed to address.” – Senior Official
“The exercise was a big learning experience that made me much more aware of how things could be improved.” – Councillor
“An excellent exercise. Its impact however will depend on how much of the recommendations actually get taken forward.” – Senior Official
Ms Nompucuko SkweyiyaPosition:
Director, Office of the City ManagerEmail: Tel:
041 506 1911
Date Completed: Complete
In 2018, eThekwini Municipality (EM) agreed to undertake a self-assessment through
the Integrity and Social Accountability Self-Assessment tool developed through the
CSP InTAcT project. EM appointed a City Assessment Team comprising a senior
councillor, the Head of Development, Planning, Environment and Management and the
Senior Manager: Strategic Executive: Infrastructure Co-ordination, Engineering
Services to work with the InTAcT team.
A self-assessment questionnaire was completed and an online perception survey was circulated to relevant staff. An additional benchmarking instrument was introduced in the eThekwini assessment process to collect additional data through scoring the City’s integrity and social accountability performance, as well as to supplement the perception survey.
An intensive three-day visit was held from the 22nd to the 24th of May 2018 where the InTAcT team held a series of interviews and focus groups with officials and councillors, as well as with some external stakeholders such as the business chamber. The City Assessment Team opted not to be part of these engagements so as to give interviewees and focus group participants the space to speak freely on the topics of the project.
The InTAcT team presented its initial conclusions to the members of the City Assessment Team on the 24th of May 2018. The InTAcT team thereafter completed a report with detailed recommendations regarding key infrastructure and land development processes and integrity and social accountability performance. The InTAcT team met with the City Assessment Team on the 27th of June 2018 to discuss the report as well as workshop the improvement plan for the City.
The report and improvement plan will be presented to the City Manager on the 13th of June 2018
For the first time staff members got an opportunity to express themselves about how they view the organisation.” – Senior Official
““I think it would make impact in terms of how we do things as a City.” (In response to the question: “Would you say there have been positive impacts on the city since the assessment exercise?)” – Councillor
"Professional team with excellent inter-personal skills to glean subtle yet important underlying 'causes’” – (Senior manager)
“Consciousness about integrity and social accountability was achieved.” – Senior Official
Strategic Executive, EngineeringEmail: Tel:
031 311 7176
eThekwini City Officials with the InTAcT team
Date Completed: Complete
The City of Ekurhuleni undertook to host an Integrity and Social Accountability
Self-Assessment in April 2018. For various reasons, it was not possible to conduct
the self-assessment as planned. A rapid review was conducted by the InTAcT project
team in May 2018 instead that involved interviews over two days with six relevant
A report with recommendations on how to take forward the integrity and social accountability agenda has been submitted to Ekurhuleni for further engagement with CSP.
The purpose of the self-assessment is to give participating cities a
picture of their integrity and social accountability performance in relation to
critical decision making processes related to land development and infrastructure
development. It will serve to highlight strengths and challenges, as well as make
recommendations regarding how the city can incrementally improve its decision-making
It is also the intention that the exercise creates a basis for inter- and intra-city dialogue about how to improve policy, practice and performance related to integrity, social accountability and smart governance.
The project approach is rooted in shared learning and does not involve any inspection, verification or auditing. The exercise is informed by the following principles:
City Assessment Framework
The InTAcT City Assessment Framework enables cities to assess their land development and infrastructure development practices through the lens of social accountability, integrity and transparency. With cities being the primary stakeholders in the InTAcT Project, the aim is to recognise good practice and to identify areas of improved performance related to social accountability, integrity and transparency.
More specifically, the InTAcT Project seeks to assist cities in unpacking the decision making processes related to land and infrastructure development (e.g. how decisions are made, ratified and communicated to relevant stakeholders, including citizens and communities; identify complexities, good practices and vulnerabilities), and explore the nexus between decisions made, land development, land use management and infrastructure projects, to ensure these decision processes achieve – or at least progress toward – integrity and social accountability outcomes.
The InTAcT Project focuses on four critical areas of decision-making related to land and infrastructure development, namely prioritisation, procurement, permissions and performance.
These are also areas where unaccountable, unethical and hidden actions typically manifest and which are consequently a focus for improving governance. The InTAcT Assessment Framework seeks to ascertain to what extent a City’s prioritisation, procurement, permissions and performance decisions adhere to requirements for integrity and social accountability. The table below unpacks what the assessment framework will focus on/what it is concerned about.
At a high level, the city assessment seeks to determine the following:
Each of these high level questions is supported by a series of sub-questions aimed at understanding the status quo and opportunities for improvement at a city level.
The following assessment instruments have been developed:
These assessment instruments will assist the City to engage in a rigorous, systematic and focused review of its practices and to determine a performance improvement plan.
Each city’s performance will be assessed against the benchmark of an ideal municipality. The benchmark provides the framework for the self-assessment, looks at adherence to policy prescripts relevant to integrity and social accountability, perceptions on performance and impact, and evidence of good practice, all within the focus of land development and infrastructure development decision making. The InTAcT team will be seeking evidence that allows it to make a ‘reasoned’ assessment against each of the core outcomes/attributes.
The assessment process is a dynamic one, and requires a high degree of flexibility during the 4-day visit. The process is shown below:
A City Guidelines Document has been designed as a manual to help municipalities understand and prepare for the self-assessment process. Additional information, such as a copy of the assessment framework and a sample programme is included as annexures.
Self-assessment report and improvement plan
Following the completion of the interviews and focus groups, the self-assessment
team and external specialists will identify good practices and areas for
improvement. The external specialists will then draft the self-assessment report and
improvement plan based on the conclusions of the city’s self-assessment team. This
will be finalised after comment and a further workshop with the self-assessment
Presentation to Mayco and senior management The first phase of the self-assessment will conclude with a presentation of the self-assessment findings and the improvement plan to the Mayoral Committee and the top management team.
Follow-Up The next phase of the project will involve writing up case studies and tools to support the improvement plans. This will draw on good practice and innovation in South African cities and elsewhere. It will also involve working with participating cities to explore key challenges they experience in the urban development decision-making cycle and how to address these.
The feedback provided in the final presentation will be supplemented with a written report to further support the conclusions and recommendations made. This should be available approximately two weeks after the assessment.
The process for the drafting of the report will be as follows.
The Improvement Plan The self-assessment is only one stage in the process of working towards improvement. While the assessment will identify good practice and areas requiring attention, it will be the res ponsibility of the Council to draw up a detailed improvement plan that will take further the recommendations made in the final report.
Evaluation is key to ensuring that the quality of the review process is maintained. Finding out what people think of the experience of a review is also a primary means of improving the programme. The participating municipality will be provided with evaluation forms at the end of the week.