Transparency International Ukraine has presented a new version of the DOZORRO system of civic monitoring of public procurement. Artificial intelligence will assess risk factors in each tender in their entirety and offer civic activists to process those which look most suspicious.

On 19 July in Kyiv, at DOZORRO FEST 2018, new principles of work of the DOZORRO monitoring portal were presented. If before, the portal had been a place to collect feedback to suspicious procurement in the ProZorro system, now it will be based on AI capable of learning independently. The system will assess every procurement in terms of risk factors and select the most questionable ones. The final decisions will be made by representatives of CSOs on the DOZORRO community, who have been monitoring public procurement for over a year now. They will decide whether to file a complaint with the procuring entity, its supervisory agency, public inspectors or law enforcement. The final verdict of a person will be the basis for AI to learn further.

At the presentation, the portal’s tech coordinator Andrii Kucherenko claimed that, given the person-machine interaction, “it will take 2-3 one-month iterations until the system gives much better predictions. I am sure that the quality of predictions will be very high by the end of this year.” DOZORRO will start working on this new basis immediately.

DOZORRO FEST 2018 is the biggest gathering of activists working on public procurement monitoring in Ukraine. This year, over 150 participants gathered in Kyiv. Apart from representatives of CSOs, the festival is attended by representatives of public supervisory agencies, business and public procuring entities. DOZORRO community coordinator Ivan Lakhtionov talked about the results of civic monitoring: “As of today, 10,000 instances of procurement have been analyzed by civic activists. Meanwhile, the country’s main supervisory agency, State Audit Service, analyzed 3300 of them in 2017.”

“This is very challenging work. In fact, we work as a lightning rod for ProZorro. Every day, we get fails instead of wins. Every day, we work with those fails,” says TI Ukraine’s Director of Innovation Projects Program Viktor Nestulia.

The new functionality has been developed with the support of Omidyar Network, Open Contracting Partnership and the project Transparency and Accountability in Public Administration and Services (USAID, UKaid, Eurasia Foundation), EBRD.

The community of civic supervisors of public tenders, coordinated by Transparency International Ukraine, started its work in the spring of 2017, and the monitoring portal DOZORRO was launched on 1 November 2016.