A groundbreaking workshop recently took place at BRAC University in Dhaka from 5-7 September 2023. Hosted by the Centre for Entrepreneurship Development (CED) of BRAC University, assembled global industry leaders to foster transparency, accountability, and innovation across various industries. This initiative capitalized on collaboration and shared learning facilitated by Open Supply Hub (OSHub), WikiRate, and Mapped in Bangladesh (MiB). As we thank everyone who participated actively and contributed valuable insights, it is imperative how these platforms intersect in improving data gathering and publication.
Mapped in Bangladesh (MiB), are an initiative designed to map out and categorize manufacturing units and labor forces in Bangladesh. primarily focusing on the export-oriented ready-made garment (RMG) industry, MiB aims to create an exhaustive, public database of factories, workers, and their conditions. MiB collects data through extensive ground research, surveys, and interviews with factory owners, workers, and other stakeholders. This information is then made public, providing valuable insights for policy-makers, activists, and researchers. By contributing localized data, MiB serves as a rich source for anyone wanting to understand the industrial landscape and labor conditions in Bangladesh.
In terms of partnership at the global level, WikiRate is an open platform for researching and rating companies based on their environmental, social, and governance (ESG) performance. It aims to make ESG data freely accessible, promoting transparency and accountability. WikiRate allows users to publish ratings and reviews of companies based on publicly available information and user-generated content, fostering corporate accountability and improvement.
Along with WikiRate, Open Supply Hub (OSHub) is a collaborative platform that uses unique identifier technology and data analytics to create a transparent supply chain. It brings together manufacturers, suppliers, and buyers to monitor and verify ethical sourcing. OSHub gathers data from touchpoints along the supply chain and provides analytical insights into ethical sourcing practices, environmental impacts, and labor conditions. With its data-centric approach, OSHub offers a comprehensive view of the supply chain that can be used to make informed decisions.
How the Platforms Complement Each Other
Data Synergy: MiB’s localized data can serve as an invaluable base for WikiRate and OSHub. While WikiRate can use this data to rate and review companies in Bangladesh, particularly in the garment sector, OSHub can integrate it into its supply chain analytics. Conversely, data from WikiRate's global ratings and OSHub’s supply chain analytics can add layers of context to MiB’s localized data.
Transparency and Accountability: MiB and WikiRate both serve as platforms that enhance corporate transparency but from different angles. While MiB provides a micro-level view by mapping local factories and labor forces, WikiRate offers a macro-level perspective by evaluating companies based on their global ESG performance. OSHub further complements these efforts by tracking and verifying activities throughout the supply chain, thereby ensuring greater accountability.
Fostering Collaboration: The joint workshop at BRAC University serves as an example of how these three platforms can foster collaboration. Shared learning among these organizations could lead to the development of new methodologies and tools for data collection and analysis, which could be invaluable in driving transparency and accountability across industries.
Technology and Community-driven Approaches: While OSHub utilizes unique identifier technology for data verification, WikiRate leverages the power of the community for data validation and ratings. MiB, with its focus on ground research, provides the raw data that can be further validated and enriched by WikiRate’s and OSHub’s respective methodologies. Together, they form a comprehensive, multi-faceted approach to data gathering and publication.
The learning workshop hosted by BRAC University's Centre for Entrepreneurship Development is a catalyst for collaborating among MiB, WikiRate, and OSHub. These platforms, through their synergy, hold immense potential to shape a future of data-driven transparency and accountability. By combining localized and global data, cutting-edge technology, and community-driven insights, they pioneer a new paradigm for understanding industries and their societal impact. We celebrate this spirit of collaboration and eagerly look forward to the strides these platforms will make in the days to come.