F11: Open government and its interconnections with Internet governance

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Session teaser

Open Government Partnership (OGP) and its value for the European Dialogue on Internet Governance – what’s in it for Governments, for the Civil Society and for the future of democracy?!

Session description

Open Government Partnership (OGP) was launched in 2011 to provide an international platform for domestic reformers committed to making their governments more open, accountable, and responsive to citizens. Since then, OGP has grown from 8 countries to the 69 participating countries, of which 29 are in Europe. In all of these countries, government and civil society are working together to develop and implement ambitious open government reforms. As part of OGP, Governments commit to:

  • Increase the availability of information about governmental activities,
  • Support civic participation,
  • Implement the highest standards of professional integrity throughout our administrations, and
  • Increase access to new technologies for openness and accountability.

As part of their National Action Plans on Open Government, co-created together with Civil Society, Governments have to deliver on the commitments they include in their country action plans, and accept an Independent Reporting/review on the degree to which the commitments have been accomplished or not.

What is the link between OGP and EuroDIG or the broader Internet Governance debate?! In OGP, Governments commit to engaging civil society and the business community to identify effective practices and innovative approaches for leveraging new technologies to empower people and promote transparency in government. In OGP, we also recognize that increasing access to technology entails supporting the ability of governments and citizens to use it. It is acknowledged that technology is a complement, not a substitute, for clear, useable, and useful information.

New technologies offer opportunities for information sharing, public participation, and collaboration. As part of country Action Plans on Open Government, the intent is also to include commitments that harness these technologies in order to make more information public in ways that enable people to both understand what their governments do and to influence decisions. For these, it is important to ensure that online spaces are accessible and secure and are trustful platforms for delivering services, engaging the public, and sharing information and ideas.

In line with the above, the session proposes to both share the progress made by OGP during the 5 years time, as well as to analyze the type of commitments European OGP Governments include as part of their NAPs which are technology/Internet based and what are the key challenges in implementing those (based on the results of the reports, etc). How can we have NAPs include commitments around co-creating Internet policies (ICT4D, etc) at country level with CSOs, and thus, ensuring that Internet continues to benefit thousands of citizens through affordable costs, through its robustness, reliability, being secure and accessible for all. The session also aims to highlight the role Internet Governance plays for the broader Open Government, Democratization Agendas.

Keywords

Open Government, Internet Governance, democracy, technology, secure online spaces, accessibility, access to information, citizens, governments, co-creation, action plans

Format

The session will be a mixture of presentation/ignite talk style and Q&A part.

Further reading

People

  • Veronica Cretu, President, Open Government Institute based in Moldova, member of the Civil Society Steering Committee of the Open Government Partnership (OGP);
  • Loreta Vioiu, Administrator, World Forum for Democracy, Directorate General of Democracy, Council of Europe

Session twitter hashtag

Hashtag: #eurodig16 #OGP4AccessibleInternet