OGP Newsletter
January 2017

#OGP16 is over, but the work has just begun. Read about successes and challenges of the Summit, first-hand experiences, and future plans to #Act2Open through #opengov.

The Future of Open Government

By Jean-Vincent Place, Secretary of State for State Reform and Simplification, and Manish Bapna, Executive Vice President of World Resources Institute

More than 4,000 people gathered in Paris from 7-9th December for the Open Government Partnership (OGP) Global Summit 2016 hosted by the Government of France. OGP is a unique partnership dedicated to making government decision making more open, inclusive and responsive. To that end, the summit yielded outcomes that can help reshape the future of open government and combat threats to democracy around the world. Read more here.

OGP Goes Subnational: Highlights from the 2016 Global Summit

By Brittany Giroux Lane, Program Manager, Open Government Partnership

In December 2016, Open Government Partnership, the Government of France, and the City of Paris hosted the OGP Global Summit. With an entire day devoted to subnational governments, the Summit celebrated the  work accomplished by subnational pioneers and leaders in the open government community as well as kicked off the exciting future of OGP at the local level. Find out more here.

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Data Journalism

By Dietlind Lerner, Communications Director, OGP

Yes, data journalism is based on the premise that there are many important, untold stories hidden in the data that governments and other actors are providing today. But the tools involved are easy to master, the benefits mirror those of moving from pen to mouse, and the goal of writing an illuminating story has remained the same. The event that changed my mind was the OGP Data Bootcamp, hosted by the OGP communications and civil society teams on the eve of our 2016 OGP Global Summit in Paris. Read more about the bootcamp - and the tools - here.

Seeking #OGP16 Feedback

Did you attend #OGP16 in Paris? We'd love to hear from you about your experience. Please fill out our feedback form

From Niche to Mainstream to Viral - the parallel realities of the OGP movement

By Triin Ilves, European Youth Press

Whereas the 75 member countries of the Open Government Partnership (OGP) initiative are already forming a considerable group of the “cool kids” in the world, luckily, they don’t see themselves as an elitist group. A prevailing argument among many is the importance of an ever-growing network. Reach and spread out, emphasize openness in various fields (governing, data usage, new concepts), include more people - these ideas were repeated in various panels, mentioned by the governing heads of the free world, and concluded in the coffee-talks throughout the 2016 OGP Global Summit in Paris. Read more about Triin's Summit experience here.

2016 1st Place Open Government Awards - ProZorro, Ukraine
"Everyone sees everything. We believe that trnsparency is the first and most needed step to combat corruption."
Quote of the Month: Iurii Bugai
Click through to hear Iurii Bugai's presentation about ProZorro, the first place winner from this year's Open Government Awards

From Pork to Performance: Follow the Money; it's the Tip of the Iceberg

By Samantha Custer, Hanif Rahemtulla, Kai Kaiser, and Rogier van den Brink

The delivery of basic public services – roads, schools, and post-disaster assistance – is one of the most important functions that governments discharge. On the surface, this should be a straightforward proposition: sufficient money, properly spent, equals more and better services. However, when services break down, farmers, fathers, and families all experience the pain points in immediate, tangible ways. Read more about this deep-seated problem - and innovative solutions - here.

Sunlight in the Asia-Pacific: Open Government for the Sustainable Development Goals

By Shreya Basu, Rachel Ostrow, and Liviana Zorzi

In mid-2016, the UNDP Bangkok Regional Hub and OGP launched a call for information on open government initiatives that are contributing to or have the potential to contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the Asia-Pacific region. The idea behind launching the call was simple: to find practical examples of open governance supporting the SDGs, that have already been or are being tested on the ground with signs of positive results, and share them so that others can take inspiration from and learn from these examples. Read about all ten featured initiatives here.

OGP Toolbox: Global hackathon & beyond

By Paula Forteza and Johan Richer

Open data portals, public consultation platforms, tools to monitor and co-create the law, discussion forums, civic tech solutions, online platforms to follow the implementation of national action plans: the OGP Toolbox is a collaborative platform that gathers digital tools (software and online services) used throughout the world to improve democracy and promote transparency, participation and collaboration. Find out more about the toolbox here.

Featured OGP Commitment 

Subnational Pilot Program: Buenos Aires
Commitment: Transparent Functions in an Open Government, Milestone 2
Action Plan:

An innovative commitment in Buenos Aires has the potential to disclose massive amounts of local government data - and shine a light on corruption. As one of OGP’s fifteen Subnational Pioneers, Buenos Aires is at the forefront of a movement that brings inclusive government to the municipal level. One of the milestones in Buenos Aires’ commitment to “Transparent Functions in an Open Government” seeks a co-created plan for openness in the judicial system and legislature. One component of this commitment intends to set up performance indicators for courts and publicize the results of those measurements.

A thick vein of corruption runs through Argentinean politics. Ties between government officials and private sector businessmen in Argentina frequently result in graft, favors and kickbacks - eroding trust in government among ordinary citizens. In August, a member of former President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner’s government was caught in a convent outside Buenos Aires with $9 million in cash and luxury watches stuffed into two duffel bags, just months before charges against Ms. Kirchner herself were announced. A justice in a separate case against Ms. Kirchner was removed from the case, due to his close ties with the presidency. Such relationships between the judiciary and politicians perceived as corrupt can taint the public’s view of an impartial justice system. As the capital, Buenos Aires is often the focus of these stories about corruption, but is seeking to revolutionize its government by making it open, participatory, and accountable. Opening up the work of the judiciary is part of that plan.

Buenos Aires has been a laboratory for open government reforms for some time, starting in 1998 as one of the first cities to have a local freedom of information law, and continuing to this day, with its own dedicated open data portal and collaborating with the national OGP team. As Buenos Aires implements Milestone 2, there are several intended outputs for the Magistracy of the City: opening up three data sets each trimester of the year, including data on resolutions, agreements, budgets, contracts, procurement, and more; as well as posting results in the “measurable and participatory judicial management program” every three months, including analysis of results and proposals for improvements

For the High Court of Justice in Buenos Aires, the outputs are similar: creation of an open data website within the first three months of implementation, and the opening at least three data sets for every trimester thereafter, including High Court resolutions and electoral data. Sentencing information, electoral data, and other publications of the High Court of Justice will be published in open formats and coded to the standard of international best practices.

As these milestones are implemented, the government of Buenos Aires and civil society organizations involved hope to shine a light on the actions of the judiciary, as well as restore trust in a system that many view as broken.

OGP in the News: #OGP16 Global Summit 2016 Edition

By Jacqueline McGraw, Communications Intern, OGP

2016 came to an impressive close for OGP with the 4th Open Government Partnership Global Summit in Paris from December 7-9, which attracted significant interest from media around the world. Set to a backdrop of concerning geopolitical developments in numerous countries (OGP and other), including the rise of movements rooted in stringent nationalism and closed societies, the Summit established OGP as a source of hope for democracy and society at large. Read more here.

Employment Opportunities
Americas Government Support Officer 
OGP is seeking a Government Support Officer for the Americas. The Government Support Officer will support OGP countries in the Americas to develop and implement high quality, relevant and ambitious OGP action plans. She or he will be expected to identify and encourage learning between OGP countries and document peer exchange activities. Minimum 5 years experience working in or with governments in the Americas. Fluent English and Spanish required.

Grants Associate
OGP is seeking a Grants Associate to work in the DC office. The Grants Associate is primarily responsible for putting together and submitting grant reports in a timely manner. S/he will review the conditions of the grant agreement/contract, write the narrative report with help from program staff, liaise with and collect the necessary financial report(s) and submit to funders. 3-5 years experience required.

Call for IRM National Researchers 
The Independent Reporting Mechanism (IRM) of the Open Government Partnership (OGP) is seeking individuals to carry out research at the national level in a variety of countries to assess government progress on implementation of their OGP Action Plans.

Call for Subnational Researchers 
The Independent Reporting Mechanism (IRM) of the Open Government Partnership (OGP) is seeking individuals to carry out research at the subnational level in a variety of countries to assess progress on implementation of their OGP Subnational Action Plans.
Buzz on #OpenGov   

Orange Magazine covered #OGP16 for the European Youth Press. Read all their coverage here.

The #OGP16 Storify is up - check out the best pictures, tweets, and stories out of the Summit!

Did you miss any of the publications, features, press coverage, or interviews at #OGP16? Find them in one easy to access place here.

Tanzania brought a film crew to #OGP16 - check out all their videos, interviews, and features here.

The OGP Instagram featured Humans of #OpenGov during #OGP16. Check it out here.

The World of #OpenGov
Transparency International will be launching its 2016 Corruption Perceptions Index on January 25 in London. Details here.
The Hague will be hosting a course on integrity and anti-corruption from March 6-17 in Zurich.
Civicus and Publish What You Pay have jointly authored “Against All Odds,” a report on civic space and natural resource justice.
Putting citizens’ voice at the center of development, a briefing from Oxfam, is available here.
The Impacts of Civic Technology conference will take place in Florence, Italy on April 25-26.
The Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project and Transparency International have launched the Global Anti-Corruption Consortium. Details here.
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