IBP’s Statement of Values is the expression of our core beliefs — those that define our priorities and goals, and in so doing, express our organizational identity and culture. This Statement serves both internal and external purposes.
As members of IBP we believe in:
- Transparency and Accountability. Governments are the stewards, not the owners, of public funds — including those that are derived from natural resources and foreign assistance. Thus, we believe that they are obliged to strive for the highest standards of transparency and must be held accountable for their actions by the people who pay their salaries. Likewise, we hold ourselves accountable to our partners, donors, and other stakeholders, and deliver on our commitments in a transparent manner.
- Democracy and Human Rights. For us, this means that all people have the right to participate in public decision-making processes that affect their lives and to access the information that empowers them to participate meaningfully. Critical to democracy is active citizenship, which envisions citizens who are empowered both individually and collectively to advocate for change. Since rights are universal, we embrace diversity by working across a wide range of countries with different cultures and contexts. Our commitment to diversity is also reflected in the composition of our staff. The diverse backgrounds and points of view of our staff enrich our organization and our work. These values drive us to focus on strategies that we believe will improve the lives of all people, particularly the poor and marginalized.
- Collaboration. Competition and rivalry, either internal or external, undermine creative solutions to the problems that we are working to address. To fulfill our mission, we need to engage with a broad range of external actors, while fostering collaboration among IBP staff, all of which requires flexibility. We approach all of our engagements with partners and other stakeholders — as well as with each other — respectfully, working with them as peers to achieve our goals. We value the voices of our partners, provide spaces for them to be heard, and strive to promote their voices and messages at every available opportunity. We see ourselves as consensus builders who are strong but reasonable, and passionate yet humble.
- Independence. While we always seek ways to build bridges and establish connections, these bridges and connections are not made at the expense of our independence. Our strategies and our advocacy are evidence-based, and the strength of our work derives from independent, uncompromised research as well as thoughtful analysis.
- Integrity and Ethical Behavior. Consistent with our demand that governments be open, honest, and accountable to their citizens, we embrace openness and honesty in all aspects of our work. We strive to ensure that the ways in which we work and the kinds of work that we engage in are consistent with our mission, goals, and values. Since our ultimate goals are to improve governance and reduce poverty, value for money and environmental sustainability are critical to our integrity. Thus, we are committed to using our financial resources wisely and prudently for activities that generate value and impact, as well as being mindful of the environmental impact of our operations.
- Learning. We strive to cultivate an environment of learning within IBP to ensure that it is an effective organization. To this end, we document our work and its impact, provide spaces to critically evaluate our efforts, and regularly integrate those lessons into our strategies and operations. We endeavor to understand and document our successes and failures and use both as opportunities to learn about ourselves and our work.
- Excellence. We are committed to professionalism and hard work, and we have a passion for getting the work done and achieving our goals. We hold our work to the highest standards, by drawing on the expertise of our staff, partners, and others, as well as the latest research and good practice in the field. We encourage continuous learning among both our partners and our staff so that they can develop their knowledge and skills, grow professionally, and excel in their work.
- Optimism. We take the problems that we are tackling seriously, but this seriousness does not equal a lack of hope. We believe that we can make a difference in the way that governments operate, and ultimately, in people’s lives, by working for budget transparency, participation, and accountability. We believe that there is room to enjoy the relationships that we develop through our work and to approach challenges with a positive attitude. Optimism, joy, and a sense of humor are important creative forces that allow us to continue pushing for change.