Youth comprise 26% of the Sri Lankan population and is a powerful force of positive change. Their opinion and stance will determine the future course of the anti-corruption fight in Sri Lanka. However, at present they do not have a platform to report and discuss their experiences of corruption.
Corruption is so deep rooted in Sri Lankan society that many people belonging to the older generations have become immune to its evils. As a percentage of the population is still unspoiled by corruption, youth have a vital role to play in the fight against corruption. However they lack an attractive, user friendly mode of expressing their opinions, reporting corruption and speaking out against this evil. The Bribery Commission of Sri Lanka has proved ineffective and do not have any credibility in the eyes of the youth and other avenues available are considered time consuming and bureaucratic.
Transparency International Sri Lanka (TISL) seeks to bridge this gap by providing the public, with a special focus on youth, an opportunity to express their views against corruption through their ICT devices (mobiles phones, personal computers, etc). The platform will not only display reports of incidence of corruption and the views of the youth, but will also collate and aggregate the information provided to visually present the impact of corruption in Sri Lanka through tables, graphs and maps.
TISL is operating in an environment with where ICT usage is on the rise, especially among the youth. However usage is limited in rural localities due to limited access to computers and the internet. However, as of December 2010 Sri Lanka’s mobile phone subscribers exceeded well over 17 million which accounts for 80% of the population. Mobile phone usage in Sri Lanka is among the highest in South Asia and is increasingly becoming the popular mode of accessing the internet. SMS is also a very popular mode of communication among the general public and is used for reporting and collecting information.
The target audience of the platform would be the general public but with a special focus on youth. The design of the platform should encourage youth engagement. However, the information presented could be from the general populace and would benefit the same. The information presented would be informative to public and elected officials, academics and policy makers and media.