German public broadcaster ARD is continuing its efforts to boost transparency. It has joined forces with the German Producers Alliance to publish a new transparency and anti-corruption code of practice.

ARD and Producers’ Alliance agree transparency strategy © Martin Schumann -
ARD and Producers’ Alliance agree transparency strategy © Martin Schumann –

ARD code of practice

Under the new initiative ARD and the German Producers Alliance agreed that production should focus on high quality content at affordable and marketable prices.

Transparency and anti-corruption measures are seen as a key element and will include keeping records of all project expenses, co-productions and licenced productions in a yearly “transparency report”.

ARD chief, Lutz Marmor emphasised, “Both ARD and producers support high quality programming. This includes a trusting and open interaction with one another. It means fair and realistic prices, as well as transparency concerning expenditure. We need a concerted approach to corruption. Our code of practice confirms these principles.”

Early-warning system

Chairman of the German Producers Alliance, Alexander Thies, added, “With the new code of practice, ARD and the Producers Alliance are taking an important step in the direction of transparency.

“The annual producers’ report will not only contain information on the number of programming hours, but also on the broadcaster’s expenditure per genre, including for contracted work, co-productions and licenced productions. In future people will know how much the ARD spends on its programming mandate.

“The code of practice also sets up an early-warning system to detect and fight corruption and irregularities.”

The initiative comes after independent producers called for greater transparency concerning public broadcasters’ tendering process and the award of production contracts.

You can find the complete code of practice here.