About the Institute

The Government Transparency Institute (GTI) is a non-partisan think tank researching and advocating good governance. Born from the research and civil society activism of its founder Mihály Fazekas, the Institute was founded in Budapest in 2015 to provide an independent, research-driven voice to the causes of transparency, anti-corruption, and good-governance in Europe and beyond. It is financed by private donations, European research funds, and government contract work, and works independently of political parties or special interest groups. The aim of the Institute is to better understand the causes, characteristics, and consequences of low-quality governance with interdisciplinary analysis, drawing on political science, economics, law, and data science.

We help citizens and companies hold their governments accountable through the publication of novel datasets and robust analyses. Our unique research approach uses Big Data, econometrics, and qualitative methods to understand micro-behaviour, macro-outcomes, and the links between the two. Our main themes include corruption, collusion, spending efficiency, administrative quality, public procurement, and legislative processes. We believe that the combination of  a thorough qualitative understanding and precise quantitative measurement of the state is the foundation of good governance.


Staff

Mihály Fazekas, director & founder  

 

Mihály Fazekas is an assistant professor at the Central European University, School of Public Policy, with a focus on using Big Data  methods to understand the quality of government globally. He is the scientific director of GTI, while serving as a non-resident research fellow at the University of Cambridge and senior research associate at the University College London. He has a PhD from the University of Cambridge where he pioneered Big Data methods to measure and understand high-level corruption in Central- and Eastern Europe.

His research and policy interests revolve around corruption, favouritism, private sector collusion, and government spending efficiency. Methodologically, he has experience in both quantitative and qualitative methods in diverse fields such as public policy, economics, and political science. He worked at the University of Cambridge as the scientific coordinator of the Horizon 2020 funded project DIGIWHIST which used a Big Data approach to measuring corruption risks, administrative capacity, and transparency in public procurement in 33 European countries. He also serves as a co-Principal Investigator on the British Academy/DFID funded research project looking at anti-corruption in development aid funded procurement. He regularly consults the European Commission, Council of Europe, EBRD, OECD, World Bank, and range of national governments and NGOs across the globe. Together with Bence Tóth and István János Tóth, he was awarded on two occasions the first prize in the U4 Anti-Corruption Resource Centre competition for the best new proxy measure of corruption.

Mihály’s CV & homepage

 

Ágnes Czibik, managing director 

Ágnes Czibik is the managing director of GTI. She holds a master’s degree in economics with a specialisation in public policy and applied statistics. Her field of expertise is using large administrative datasets and robust quantitative analysis to provide tools for evaluating government performance and promoting transparency in the field of public procurement. She gained experience in working with various public procurement datasets across Europe while working in the large-scale Horizon2020 funded research project DIGIWHIST.

 

Bence Tóth, senior analyst 

Bence Tóth is a PhD candidate at UCL SSEES and a senior analyst at GTI. He was working on the DIGIWHIST research project based at the University of Cambridge, where he assisted the collection and publication of public contracting data from 35 jurisdictions across Europe and building indicators of administrative capacity and integrity. Currently, he works on the British Academy/DFID funded research project looking at anti-corruption in development aid-funded procurement. He is also frequently involved in policy research projects for the European Commission, World Bank, European Investment Bank, and various NGOs.

Together with Mihály Fazekas, he was awarded the first prize in the U4 Anti-Corruption Resource Centre competition for the best new proxy measure of corruption. His research focuses primarily on measuring corruption and  collusion risks in public procurement markets using large-scale contract and company level data. His  PhD research is about informality in locally managed public procurement contracts where informal enforcement and local information have particular importance in contract governance.

 

Nóra Regös, analyst

Nóra Regös works as an analyst at GTI. She has a master degree in economics and business administration with a specialisation in public policy from Universitat Autonoma in Barcelona and a master degree in sociology from ELTE Budapest. Her main research interests focus on policy evaluation and government performance monitoring. At GTI she is mainly involved in the project “Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning in Latin America” (MEL), which aims to evaluate the current state of open
contracting in the field of public procurement in Mexico, Chile and Columbia. Besides, she contributes to other projects of the Institute in the area of good governance assessments and efficiency calculations using Big Data methods.

 

Isabelle Adam, analyst                                               

Isabelle Adam works as an analyst at GTI. She graduated in Global Public Policy at Central European University in Budapest and IBEI Barcelona, focusing on the governance of development. Previously, she studied Global Project and Change Management at Windesheim Honours College in Zwolle, the Netherlands, and gathered experience abroad in countries such as Uganda, Madagascar and Bolivia conducting field research and working in local NGOs. She works on the DFID-funded research project looking at anti-corruption in government procurement and is involved in research projects looking into the impact of transparency reforms and ways to detect collusion in public procurement.

 

Ahmed Alshaibani, data scientist 

Ahmed Al-Shaibani works as a quantitative analyst and data scientist at GTI. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and Management, and an MS in Economic Analysis and Policy from the Central European University. His interests revolve around macroeconomics and technological impact on research. He is involved in diverse projects, which include research, data cleaning and transformation codes (JSON to CSV), advanced string-matching algorithms for the European Investment Bank, report automation for TenderX (an exciting new tool in development), web procurement data scraping, and reports writing on Framework Agreement Public Procurement for the OECD. He also contributes to other projects of the Institute in data science-related tasks (you can also write it as: tasks related to data science), like data transformation and runtime efficiency in R, Python, and Stata.

 

Aly Abdou, quantitative analyst 

Aly Abdou works as a quantitative analyst at GTI. He holds a master degree in economic policy from Central European University and an engineering degree from Cairo University. He is interested in using network-oriented methods for impact assessment and causal analysis. He has experience with researching fiscal decentralization policies and government budgeting in Egypt. His independent research focuses in studying the network impact of cultural grants on artist’s success. At GTI, Aly is currently involved in data quality evaluation, data cleaning and preparation and quantitative data analysis.

 

 

Yuliia Kazmina, analyst, data scientist 

Yuliia Kazmina is an analyst and a programmer at GTI and a Master of Arts candidate in Economic Policy at Central European University. Her research focuses primarily on behavioral patterns of market participants, measurement of corruption, and enhancement of competition in public procurement systems. One of the main projects Yuliia has worked on in this field was the development of data-driven policy-making in ProZorro / ProZorro.Sale, Ukrainian public procurement and privatization projects. At GTI, Yuliia currently works on research projects for the European Commission, EBRD and European Investment Bank.

 

 

Alfredo Hernandez, analyst

Alfredo Hernandez is an analyst at GTI. He holds a PhD in Political Science from the Central European University and specializes in data visualization and text. His research interests include Sovereign Debt, International Political Economy and Computational Social Science. He has held academic positions at the American University of Central Asia and the OSCE Academy in Bishkek. He is currently working on developing actionable corruption indices based on procurement data for several projects at GTI.

 

 

Olena Nikulina, data scientist

Olena Nikulina is a data scientist at GTI. She holds a MA degree in Sociology (Kyiv-Mohyla Academy) and Public Policy (Central European University). Previously, she worked as a data journalist and an analyst in NGOs in Ukraine. Along with that, she consulted governmental agencies in Ukraine on data collection and analysis. She is interested in working with open data and large governmental data for studying political corruption. At GTI, Olena is involved in data scraping and processing tasks, and quantitative data analysis.

 

 

Ágnes Lopusni, back office manager   

Ágnes Lopusni works as a Back Office Manager at GTI. She has a master degree in International Relations with the specialisation in diplomacy from the Corvinus University of Budapest. Previously she studied English Philology at the University of Szeged. Her professional interest lies in international relations and finance.

 

 

 


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