Congresso em Foco
Helping Brazilians identify corruption in public spending.
In Brazil, politicians are entitled to a budget taken from public money to cover work expenses such as travel, food and car rental.
However, every year, Brazil loses about $40bn to corrupt political spending. Although Brazilians have the constitutional right to access information about politicians’ use of public funds, the data is complex to monitor, leaving room for corruption.
Eyes on the expenses.
AKQA worked with Congresso em Foco, a Brazilian independent digital news portal, to provide real-time transparent information about politicians’ spending habits. The Transparency Card accesses government databases and sends notifications when politicians spend taxpayers’ money, simplifying the visualisation and monitoring of political spending.
Designed to be as seamless as possible, the Transparency Card mimics the familiar way people track personal credit card spending. If a politician spends $23,000 on a private jet, for example, a real-time push notification is received. With this information at hand, they can request more information and question each expense.
Rather than using an app to track this information, the Transparency Card uses features native to phones to relay this information in the most straightforward format possible. Every Brazilian with a phone is transformed into a potential watchdog of public money, simplifying and democratising access to this complex data.
A trusted ally in an era of disinformation.
The initiative was promoted on social media by Congresso em Foco’s parent company, UOL, with the hashtag #EyesOnTheExpenses. It was also promoted across various Brazilian cities using OOH projections.
So far, more than 430,000 active cards are in mobile wallets, and 20 million notifications have been sent. The Transparency Card also served as an investigative resource for journalists who wrote news based on the expenses exposed by the platform.