About us

o-nama

We are CRTA (Center for Research, Transparency and Accountability), an independent, non-
partisan civil society organisation committed to developing democratic culture and civic
activism.

By creating public policy proposals, advocating for the principles of responsible behaviour by
the government and state institutions, and educating citizens on their political rights, we are
dedicated to establishing the rule of law and developing democratic dialogue.

Since 2016, we have been observing elections, both nationally and locally. We are
coordinating the work of the Citizens on Watch network, which has thousands of citizens
trained to observe the regularity of voting. The ongoing struggle to improve the conditions
for fair and free elections is the backbone of all our activities.

2002

This is how it all started

This is how it all started  

2002

The incorporation of CRTA

Before changing its name by the end of 2009, the CRTA was called Linet (Liberal Network). Its mission was to contribute to the successful transition of Serbia to a developed democratic society through the promotion of active participation of citizens in social processes and the development of their advocacy capacities.

2009

Film “Final Word”

The CRTA produced a film “Final Word” that deals with judicial proceedings for the assassination of the first democratic Prime Minister of Serbia, dr Zoran Đinđić (http://www.zavrsnarec.rs/). The film premiered on the occasion of the anniversary of the assassination, on March 12th.  You can watch the film on this link.

2009

Istinomer (Truth-O-Meter)

The CRTA launched the first fact-checking portal in Serbia and in the entire region – Istinomer.rs. The Truth-O-Meter invites politicians and all public figures to account for publicly given statements and promises. The Truth-O-Meter is a mechanism that checks the facts assessing public officials’ and politicians’ statements and analysing all important social and economic issues.

2010

Retrovizor (Rearview Mirror)

The cult video-project  “Retrovizor” first aired in the Truth-O-Meter. Ljuba Živkov analyses for the Truth-O-Meter all political and social events in his signature fashion.

2011

Film “Let’s Not Lie to One Another”

On the occasion of the tenth anniversary of democratic changes, the CRTA produced a documentary film “Let’s Not Lie to One Another”.

2012

The Truth-O-Meter election debates

During the elections called on all levels, the Truth-O-Meter initiated a series of debates entitled “Let’s Not Lie to One Another” during which politicians were called to account for their actions to citizens. Topics focused on the accountability of politicians, their election promises and on current issues solving. You can watch the documentary film about these debates on this link.

2012

Open Parliament Initiative launched

In cooperation with four partner organisations, the CRTA launched the Open Parliament Initiative aiming to monitor the work of the elected deputies and to increase the publicity of the work of the National Parliament.  It was the first time that the citizens had been provided with the information about parliamentary practices and procedures on the website  http://www.otvoreniparlament.rs/ .

2012

Map the Money Initiative

Within the scope of this initiative, the CRTA launched the portal www.pratipare.rs which enables the citizens to monitor how local authorities manage the budget, the amounts of money allocated to certain projects and whether and how they are implemented. The CRTA created “Civil Budgets” that explains in easy-to-understand language how and for what purposes public resources are used.

2012

Truth-O-Meter campaign “No to Mrkonjić in the Government”

The Truth-O-Meter initiated an online petition asking people to react against a new appointing of the Serbian Socialist Party official Milutin Mrkonjić to the Government, as according to the Truth-O-Meter analysis, he had been the least accountable public official in the previous four years. In only four days, the petition was signed by more than 4,000 citizens.

2013

The first research “Audit of political engagement”

This research, performed in accordance with the methodology from the Hansard Society from Great Britain represents a particular overview of the democratic state of the society. The extent to which citizens are willing to engage in social processes, exercise their civil rights and influence decision-makers is an indicator of the “health” of a society.

2012

The CRTA became a part of Openingparliament.org

The CRTA became a part of Openingparliament.org, a global forum gathering more than 140 organisations throughout the world that are engaged in monitoring, supporting and opening up of parliaments and  legislative institutions in their countries. The CRTA participates in the creation of a global  Declaration on Parliament Openness.

2013

“Our Money, Our Concern” Initiative

In cooperation with the Centre for Non-Profit Sector Development, the CRTA launched the portal voditeracuna.rs in order to provide the citizens with all necessary information about finances, to invite them to join different initiatives aiming to control how the budget money is spent or to ask questions to financial experts.

2013

“Bad Conduct” Campaign

The Truth-O-Meter launched a campaign to dismiss the Minister of Education when a scandal involving primary school final exams took place for the third consecutive year in a row. The Minister showed through his actions that he was not worthy of such an important public function. After the reconstruction of the Government, the Minister Education was replaced. Video regarding campaign you may watch here.

 

 

2013

“Civic Innovator” Award

The NDI honoured the director of the CRTA Vukosava Crnjanski  with its the W. Averell Harriman Democracy Award, that is dedicated to civic society representatives in the entire world who, through initiatives based on the use of new technologies, have contributed to empowering citizens to hold public officials accountable and to demand transparency in the work of state institutions.

2014

Truth-O-Meter Interviews

Truth-O-Meter Interviews

 

The Truth-O-Meter initiated a video-production and started broadcasting “Truth-O-Meter Interviews”. More than 100 interviews have been filmed so far with public officials, politicians and public figures. The focus of those interviews remained on political accountability issues. You can watch all interviews here.

2014

The CRTA in the Open Government Partnership

The CRTA in the Open Government Partnership

 

The CRTA has been active in the Open government partnership initiative (OGP) since 2014, on a global and national level. The OGP is a voluntary, multilateral initiative aimed at securing government obligations towards its citizens in terms of promoting transparency, empowering citizens, fighting corruption and using new technologies to strengthen the governance system.

2014

“Audit of political engagement 2014”

On the occasion of the International Day of Democracy, the CRTA presented the findings of the new research “Audit of political engagement Serbia”. Compared to 2013, citizens of Serbia believe more that their actions can lead to changes and at the same time they express greater readiness to actually engage in certain action in the future.

2015

The First Parliament Week

On the model of the manifestation organised by the Parliament of Great Britain, in cooperation with the National Parliament of the Republic of Serbia, the CRTA organised the first “Parliament Week”. During a week, different events and debates were organised aiming to connect citizens with the work of the National Parliament and to include them in democratic processes. You can see the firstParliament Week in this  link.

2015

Open Data Initiative

The CRTA launched a Data Centre as an open online platform that enables an easy access to data sets about various public information in Serbia, at the state and at a local level. It was developed to help journalists, activists, researchers and public officials in their search for valuable data to support their stories, campaigns, analyses and decision-making processes.

2015

Citizens demonstrate an increasing interest in politics

The third research “Audit of political engagement 2015”  presented on the occasion of the International Day of Democracy showed that a  large number of respondents in Serbia (70 per cent) believe that politicians should be primarily accountable to citizens. The results show a mild increase in citizens’ interest in politics in relation to previous years when their lack of interest was constantly growing.

2016

The CRTA starts monitoring the elections

This is the first time that the CRTA has monitored parliamentary and local elections as a domestic election observation mission in accordance with international standards implying monitoring of the pre-election period, the Election Day and the post-election period. The CRTA organised the entire observation mission in only six weeks and gather over 1,000 participants. Full report is available on this link.

2016

The Voters’ Manifesto  

During the extraordinary parliamentary election, the Truth-O-Meter created Voters’ Manifesto in order to voice out to politicians what voters stand for.

2016

The Truth-O-Meter Application “Check me”

The Truth-O-Meter developed the application “Check me” that allows to citizens to send quickly and easily to the Truth-O-Meter any news seen on the Internet so that the Truth-O-Meter’s team could fast-check it. The application can be downloaded here and the instructions for its use are explained in this video.

2016

Citizens are more interested in influencing the Government’s decisions

The results of the fourth research “Audit of political engagement 2016” show that a mere third of citizens participate in the political life of Serbia or at least believe in the citizen participation efficiency. Nevertheless, a mild positive trend can be observed when it comes to citizens’ general readiness to participate in democratic processes.

2016

The Second “Parliament Week”

The second Parliament Week gathered 60 partner organisations that organised more than 100 different events and activities in 20 cities and municipalities of Serbia. Compared to 2015, during the second Parliament Week there were twice as many events and activities organised aiming at opening a forum for discussion about parliamentary democracy.

 

2016

Inspiring girls Campaign

CRTA announced the launching of the Inspiring Girls Campaign modeled on a very successful UK campaign which  gathered 26,000 female volunteers  – thriving women with different backgrounds who volunteered an hour a year in primary schools and talked to girls about their proper experiences and different possibilities that life and career may bring. In three years, this campaign attracted 300,000 girls in the UK.

2017

CRTA becomes a part of the ENEMO

At the General Assembly of the European Network of Election Monitoring Organisations (ENEMO), the CRTA became an associated member which is the first step toward full membership in this organisation. The ENEMO strives to promote the engagement of civil society organisations in democratic processes with the aim of improving the quality of electoral processes.

2017

“Who is my Government” Initiative

The CRTA launched the portal “Who is my Government” where citizens can quickly and easily find all information about deputies’ party affiliation, who shifted allegiance after the elections, who supports the Government and who does not.  In almost one third of cities and municipalities in Serbia, there were more than one hundred cases of turncoat politicians after the last local elections held in 2016.

 

2017

CRTA observes the presidential elections

During the presidential elections, the CRTA observed the entire election process as a domestic observation mission. More than 1,000 observers participated in the mission. The final report is available on this link.

2017

Truth-O-Meter News

The Truth-O-Meter launched “Truth-O-Meter News” as a daily dose of breaking news in order to inform citizens not only about what happened but also to explain why it happened.  You can get a morning briefing at 7 am every day on your e-mail or through a web or mobile application.

 

2017

Truth-O-Meter became a part of a global fact-checking network

The Truth-O-Meter became a part of a global network that gathers fact-checking organisations after the evaluation process. The network comprises a total of 49 organisations form the whole world. Read more about this topic on this link.

2017

Wilton Park again in Serbia

After more than ten tears, Wilton Park, the executive agency of the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office, organised in Serbia, in cooperation with the CRTA a conference aiming to encourage dialogues on the issues of quality of election processes and mechanisms for citizen participation in periods between elections.

2017

Citizens are pro-democratic but do not believe in changes

The fifth opinion poll “Audit of political engagement 2017”shows that only one in four citizens of Serbia are interested in politics, whereas the confidence in citizen engagement efficiency has been reduced this year and is at the lowest level in the last five years. The results indicate that the general trend of positive changes noted in the previous year has ceased.

2018

Belgrade Elections

CRTA monitored elections for the Assembly of the City of Belgrade councillors. As the capital and the largest city in the country, Belgrade bears a huge political and economic significance  (one fourth of Serbia’s voters have the right to vote at these elections and that the ratio of political powers in Belgrade and in the rest of the country is not entirely identical).

2018

CRTA “Democracy Defender” Award Winner

The CRTA received the OSCE “Democracy Defender” Award for 2018 that is handed out to individuals and groups for their outstanding contribution to promotion of democracy and human rights protection in the spirit of the Declaration of Helsinki and other OSCE principles and values.  The “Democracy Defender” Award was established in 2016.

2018

Local Elections in Four Municipalities

CRTA’s election observation mission organized the monitoring of the work of polling boards at all 43 polls in municipality of Lucani, while mobile monitoring teams observed electoral developments on the day of the vote in other three municipalities.

2018

#IzboriLučani – CRTA Submitted Criminal Charges

CRTA submitted criminal charges on account of misuse of public resources against responsible persons in 11 public bodies and companies whose vehicles were present in Lucani during local elections on December 16, 2018.

 

2018

Recorded Increase of the Support for Democracy

The main findings of the research “Citizens’ Participation in Democratic Processes 2018”, that CRTA conducts six years in a row, show a trend of increase of the support for democracy as the best system for Serbia, while the support for the “firm hand” politics decreased.

2018

Access to Information in Serbia

CRTA launched the campaign “Serbia in Quest for Information” for the defense of the public right to know in cooperation with more than 80 partner organizations. The campaign aimed to stop the adoption of amendments to the Law on Free Access to Information of Public Importance, initiated by the government with the intention to limit the access to information about the work of public institutions.

 

2018

Voice of Courage

CRTA established the “Voice of Courage” award to acknowledge those who do not give up and persist in the fight for protection of citizen rights, those who believe and act towards meaningful democratic changes, in an environment marked by the general lack of trust and growing apathy. The recipient of the 2018 award was the initiative “We do not give up the Nis airport”.

 

2018

CRTA provides support to other CSOs

Aiming to support wider efforts towards democracy and the initiatives focused on defending the public interest, CRTA launched the program for the development of capacities, skills, as well as resources of civil society organizations, in areas of democratic culture, rule of law, fight against corruption, media freedoms, improvement of government accountability and transparency.

2019

Seventh Research “Citizens’ Participation in Democratic Processes”

Continued monitoring and assessment of citizens’ perceptions regarding democracy and democratic participation in Serbia this year showed the lack of systemic changes that could be considered as positive or negative trends in particular areas.

 

2019

Democracy Festival

On the occasion of the International Day of Democracy CRTA and its partners’ network organized the Democracy Festival under the slogan “There is no going back”, similar to other festivals celebrating democratic values around the world, as a response to growing challenges and threats facing democracy.

 

2019

Inter-party Dialogue on Electoral Conditions – vol. 1

Being the organization advocating for free and fair elections, CRTA developed the set of recommendations aimed to support the improvement of electoral conditions, and presented them as an expert to participants of the multi-party dialogue, organized at the Faculty of Political Sciences.

2019

Ten Years of the Istinomer

Istinomer (Eng. Truth-o-Meter), the first fact-checking portal in the region, initiated and launched by CRTA, celebrated ten years of operation, pledging that it will continue to defend the truth with even greater determination, and will persist in its fight against the spread of lies.

2019

“Voice of Courage” that Motivates Us

CRTA awarded the “Voice of Courage 2019” to Marija Lukic, who proved that the fight is important even if the opponent seems stronger. This award is presented by CRTA to all those who do not give up and persist in the fight for protection of citizen rights, those who believe and act towards meaningful democratic changes, in an environment marked by the general lack of trust and growing apathy.

2020

Democracy Trembles with Fear

CRTA launched the media campaign “Standing by Democracy” with an intention to encourage citizens to defend already fledgling democracy, to act as true citizens, with all rights, freedoms and responsibilities.

2020

The Worst Electoral Process

In accordance with international standards, CRTA observed the entire electoral process in 2020 parliamentary elections, and assessed the worst quality of these elections if compared to all prior elections monitored by CRTA, both in relation to the election day and the overall electoral process.

2020

Established Cooperation between Istinomer and Facebook

Together with the France Press Agency, Istinomer (Eng. Truth-o-Meter) became the official partner to Facebook for Serbia in fighting disinformation spreading across this social network. Istinomer daily verifies the content and discloses false news and disinformation expending through the Facebook platform.

 

2020

Elections Around the Corner

Considering the short period before citizens will have the opportunity to vote in the next elections, CRTA produced additional recommendations for improvement of electoral conditions.

2020

One Fourth of Citizens Interested in Politics

Voting in elections is seeing as the only mode of political engagement by majority of citizens. More than 90 percent of citizens in the last year did not initiate nor participate in any action or initiative aimed at resolving problems in local communities, showed CRTA’s latest research “Citizens’ Participation in Democratic Processes in Serbia 2020”.

2020

“Voice of Courage 2020” – Whistleblower from Krusik

CRTA presented the “Voice of Courage” award for citizens’ courage and activism in 2020 to Aleksandar Obradovic, the whistleblower from the Valjevo factory “Krusik”.

2021

Campaign “Istinomer or Polygraph”

On the occasion of the International Fact-checking Day, CRTA’s fact-checking initiative Istinomer (Eng. Truth-o-Meter) launched the campaign “Istinomer or Polygraph”, to point to the importance of truthful and verified information in the sea of false news and disinformation.

2021

“Yet there is the Hope” Campaign

Diverse life dramas of those who gave up hope in fear for even worse remain hidden among findings of many reports on the state of democracy, presented with the use of numerous statistics and cold terminology. As a response, CRTA launched the “Yet there is Hope” campaign with the use of emotion as a language.

2021

IFCN Nomination for the Nobel Peace Prize

International Fact-checking Network (IFCN), has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. Although being just a nomination, this is an important recognition of the fact-checking work around the world and its importance in the fight against disinformation, even with frequent attacks and intimidation attempts. Istinomer (Eng. Truth-o-Meter) is a member of IFCN since 2017.

2021

Undermining Democracy

The main conclusion of the CRTA’s study “Undermining Democracy” is that Serbia now does not fulfil basic requirements for being a democratic society. While the country possessed formal characteristics of democracy, its democracy was largely undermined in the last decade.

 

2021

CRTA Present the “Voice of Courage” Award to Another Whistleblower

Whistleblower Milenko Jovanovic, who in the defense of his own professional integrity, and thus the public interest, opposed the decision of the Director of the Environment Protection Agency and was consequently laid off, received the CRTA’s “Voice of Courage” award for 2021.

 

2021

“Citizens have the Power” Campaign

In an effort to support activists and civic groups, committed to and active in defending public interest when endangered, CRTA launched the campaign “Citizens have the Power”.

2021

CRTA Advocates for Legislative Changes Regulating the Elections

After almost three decades, electoral legislation is subject of changes. CRTA participated in public discussion and submitted amendments to all MPs in an effort to protect the public interest in elections.

2021

#Izbori 2022 – Election Observation Mission Established

Four months ahead of the official announcement of the 2022 elections, CRTA established the election observation mission and began with monitoring of developments preceding the official election campaign. Within this period, CRTA dedicated special attention to changes of electoral rules and procedures, that emerged from two rounds of the inter-party dialogue.

2021

Research “Citizens’ Participation in Democratic Processes 2021”

Results of the research show the increased support to democracy (54% of citizens mainly or completely agreed with the stand that democracy is the best political system for our country, in comparison with less than a half of citizens expressing the same attitudes in April 2021).

 

2022

Constitutional Referendum

CRTA observed the campaign and the day of the vote in referendum on changes to the Constitution in the area of judiciary, and assessed that irregularities recorded on the referendum day raise serious concerns in light of the upcoming elections.

 

2022

#Izbori2022 – Campaign before the Campaign

In its role of the domestic election observation mission, CRTA assessed in its report that the period preceding the official announcement of 2022 elections was marked with mass electoral abuses and pronounced inequality of electoral contestants.

2022

“GOTV” Campaign

In light of 2022 elections CRTA launched the “Get Out to Vote (GOTV)” campaign, in order to invite and mobilize citizens of Serbia to participate in the upcoming elections, and freely and consciously express their will.

 

2022

“Vote, Young Friend” Campaign

CRTA launched the campaign “Vote, Young Friend” to motivate members of the youth to exercise their voting right and participate in 2022 elections.

 

Services

Trainings

CRTA brings together NDI (National Democratic Institute) certified trainers specialised in fields of organisational capacity development, political skills and strategies and public advocacy tactics. The experience of our trainers includes more than 500 trainings where more than 6000 trainees have acquired new skills, mainly from non-governmental organisations and democratically oriented political parties.

Creating and producing campaigns

Under the auspices of CRTA, there is a team of experienced professionals in the field of integrated communications who, in collaboration with the network of external associates, is working on strategic and creative development and production of campaigns and media products for the online and offline spheres.

Research

In our research, we are focusing on issues of democratic development, parliamentary system and parliamentary procedures, work transparency and openness of institutions and responsibilities of public office holders. Based on our research findings, we are making recommendations for improving the work of institutions and public advocacy tactics.

Team and associates

crtachi

To put it briefly, our task is to prompt and to motivate citizens in order to jointly improve the state and strengthen the society.

Partners

CURRENT PARTNERS

PAST PARTNERS

In 2018, CRTA received the Democracy Defender Award, globally awarded by the OSCE, for its outstanding contribution to promoting democracy and defending human rights.

O-nama-revizorski-izvestaj

Reports

Since we advocate for the principle of transparency in the work of the public authorities, we pratice the same principle in our work. Audit reports of our work are publicly available on our site.