Marking Progress on the First Anniversary of the Open Government Partnership
“We pledge to be more transparent at every level — because more information on government activity should be open, timely, and freely available to the people. We pledge to engage more of our citizens in decision-making — because it makes government more effective and responsive. We pledge to implement the highest standards of integrity — because those in power must serve the people, not themselves. And we pledge to increase access to technology — because in this digital century, access to information is a right that is universal.”
—President Barack Obama, September 20, 2011
The Open Government Partnership (OGP) was launched in September 2011 by its eight founding governments, comprised of Brazil, Indonesia, Mexico, Norway, Philippines, South Africa, the United Kingdom, and the United States. In one year, it has grown to include 57 countries and over 300 commitments impacting more than two billion people. OGP is now a global community of government reformers, civil society leaders and business innovators, working together to advance good, open and accountable governance for the 21st century.
OGP demonstrates the power of multifaceted cooperation, as each participating government has endorsed the Open Government Declaration, which lays out a vision of good governance grounded in openness. Each government has also committed to develop and implement a National OGP Action Plan in consultation with civil society. These plans contain strong commitments to implement reforms focused on enhanced transparency, the fight against corruption, and the strengthening of communication between governments and citizens.
Over the past year, OGP has established clear processes through which governments and civil society can work together as partners. OGP is overseen by an International Steering Committee composed of governments and civil society organizations in equal numbers, a unique model that reflects the goal of equitable citizen engagement in governance.
From Commitment to Action: Implementation of OGP Commitments
As we mark the initiative’s one-year anniversary, participating countries are working to fully implement their Action Plans. The OGP Networking Mechanism is helping governments and civil society connect with the expertise they need to support these efforts. And, beginning in March 2013, an Independent Reporting Mechanism (IRM) will periodically track country progress against commitments, thereby promoting greater accountability at the national level and helping to ensure that OGP is delivering real and measurable change.
During an anniversary event hosted by the United Kingdom on the margins of this year’s UN General Assembly, Indonesia will formally join the United Kingdom as OGP co-chair. The next high-level meeting of the Partnership will take place in London in early 2013.
Governments participating in OGP include:
|South Africa*||Dominican Republic||Liberia||South Korea|
|United States*||Finland||Malta||Trinidad and Tobago|
•Indicates OGP Steering Committee members.
The United States National Action Plan
President Obama unveiled the U.S. National Action Plan in September 2011, as part of the United States’ commitment as a founding member of the Open Government Partnership. The Administration committed to undertake twenty-six individual Open Government initiatives in its ambitious National Action Plan – initiatives designed to increase public integrity, promote public participation, manage public resources more effectively, and improve public services.
The United States continues to advance efforts to implement these objectives, working closely with civil society and the public. Key commitments of the U.S. Action Plan include:
• Open Government to Increase Public Integrity: Expanding opportunities for public participation in government through the launch of “We the People,” including the release of its source code so that other countries can do the same.
• Open Government to Manage Public Resources More Effectively: Making progress in implementing the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) and increasing the transparency of U.S. foreign assistance, in part through newly-released government-wide reporting requirements for the publication of data on the Foreign Assistance Dashboard, among other reporting platforms.
• Open Government to Improve Public Services. Whether by providing greater transparency to a government program, increasing public participation in rule making, or bringing the public sector, private sector, non-profits, academia, and civil society organizations together in collaboration, we are improving public services within the United States through innovation.
For more information on OGP, please visit www.opengovpartnership.org or follow @opengovpart on Twitter.