Authors: Hasnain Iqbal

This case study is one of the five winning entries from the 2019 GDI Case Study Competition.

Prior to 2008, the public service delivery mechanism in Pakistan was outdated and inefficient because of a lack of digitization and process automation. The situation was especially critical in Punjab, the most populous province in the country, where reforming the system required changing a culture of inefficiency and rent seeking. In 2008, concerns about petty corruption led one district in Punjab to pilot the Citizen Feedback Monitoring Program (CFMP) to address the monitoring and evaluation challenge. In 2012, the Punjab Information Technology Board implemented the program across 36 districts in Punjab and 25 different public services.

Development Challenge: Improving government service delivery. The inadequacy of the public service delivery mechanism led to inefficient service delivery, petty corruption, unnecessary hurdles, and incompetent staff. These problems put a strain on government resources and inconvenienced citizens.

Project Solution: The CFMP crowd-sourced feedback on public service delivery through cell phones and used that feedback to both monitor service delivery and evaluate the performance of officials. Analytical reports were sent to government officials, enabling them to identify problems and implement evidence-based corrective measures to improve service delivery. The program team experimented with different modes of collection to arrive at the optimum mechanism that met the requirements of scalability, cost-effectiveness, and sustainability. The initial feedback collection model used SMS texts or manual phone calls. The CFMP embraced a robocall model in 2014, whereby citizens received an interactive call asking them to express “satisfaction” or “dissatisfaction” and then select the exact reason for their dissatisfaction from four or five options.

Project Results: By 2019, the CFMP made around 15,000 calls per day and had the potential to expand to 75,000 calls per day. The program had a significant impact on health service delivery in public sector hospitals across Punjab, including a marked improvement in the availability of essential medicines at all public sector hospitals across Punjab. As of 2019, CFMP monitored 25 different public services across Punjab and had contacted 2 million citizens to solicit their feedback.