OGP Newsletter
Global Summit 2015 Special Edition
Palacio de Minería, where the Summit will be held, is one of the masterpieces of neoclassical architecture in the Americas
In Praise of the Reformers

Joe Powell, Acting Executive Director, OGP

The Open Government Partnership was designed from its launch in 2011 to be a different type of multilateral initiative, one that places government and civil society on an equal footing. OGP pushes for the implementation of policy reforms, not only communiques and paper commitments. OGP suggests foreign ministries take a back seat and instead give domestic reformers a turn to shine on the international stage. And it requires independent accountability of country progress, free from the redactions and vetoes that so often make third party reporting toothless. These fundamental principles will be on full display at the third Global OGP Summit, in Mexico City from October 27-29.

The central argument of the Summit will be that open government can make a real difference in people’s lives. We know from the 2015 My World UN survey of more than 8 million people that a more honest and responsive government is a top priority regardless of where you live. That’s why the second annual open government awards will be given to officials running projects that improve public service delivery through increased transparency, public participation and accountability. It is crucial that reformers within political systems, however challenging, are supported in their efforts to open up government to more scrutiny and feedback. Excitingly, several new countries are set to join OGP at the Summit, bringing fresh ideas and political energy to the partnership....continue reading here

Quote of the Month

"The SDGs will be reached only through trustworthy, effective and inclusive institutions. This is why Mexico, as current chair of the OGP, has committed to promote citizen participation, innovative policies, transparency and accountability...As Lead Stewards of this initiative, we call on other governments to adopt these principles in order to collaborate and monitor the design and progress of policies aimed to achieve the SDGs."

President Enrique Peña Nieto
President of Mexico

Open Gov Awards 2015: Revealing this year’s top initiatives
“Glass Village Project”, “Smart Municipality”, “The Guiding Lights of the Archipelago” more about the unique public service initiatives that were submitted this year!
Munyema Hasan, Program Officer - Learning and Impact
At OGP, one of the principles guiding our work is that open government reforms should ultimately benefit the lives of the average citizen. This means that while OGP countries can reform public policies and programs to become more open, accountable and responsive, citizens should be able to see, hear and feel those changes in their lives in very real, concrete ways.  This may seem like a lofty ideal, but we like to aim high! The annual Open Government Awards were created to showcase some of the best examples of how change is being felt on the ground.  The Awards are a reminder not just to us, but also to the entire community working to make governments more open – of what can be achieved through their efforts.
This year’s Awards theme is “improving public services through open government.” Public services are the most direct way in which people interact with and experience their government. Education, healthcare, water, roads, public safety – if delivered well and accessible to all - form the foundation of inclusive development. In today’s world, people have the potential to be active rather than passive users of public services, and governments can and should help to strengthen this role.  Thirty countries (18 of which were joint applications between governments and civil society, and nine which were initiatives led or co-led by subnational governments) competed for the Open Government Awards this year. This was once again a testament to how eager OGP countries are to showcase open government initiatives making a difference on the ground...continue reading here.

  New IRM reports give light to new OGP trends

   Joseph Foti, IRM Program Director
  This year OGP’s
Independent Reporting  Mechanism (IRM) put out 18 new     reports.  For the first time, we have data on second  action plans, with the       eight OGP founding countries reports due out at next week’s Summit.
  So, what do we learn from all of these new reports? Let’s take a look:
Are OGP countries improving? Let’s break that apart into a few different aspects. First, there is the process for OGP. Second, there is how well countries do in their commitments.
So, to be more specific, are governments consulting more?
Indicators from the IRM reports show some real progress in terms of countries meeting the basic requirements of OGP. As a reminder, there are 6 procedural requirements for participation for each OGP country in preparation and implementation of an action plan. Some promising points:

1) New countries do better now when they joined than earlier countries. On average, almost all countries that joined in 2013 have ongoing mechanisms for consultation. This is up 48% from 2012’s 40%. Other changes haven’t been as dramatic, but they also started from a better place.
2) Almost every OGP country met more requirements on its second action plan than on the first.
3) In general, compliance in OGP has gone up over time (2012-2014) from an average of 2.4 steps complied with to 3.75....continue reading here


The “P” in OGP gets bigger, stronger and more diverse
Paul Maassen, Director - Civil Society Engagement, OGP

The Open Government civil society community comes together in bigger numbers and in greater diversity than ever before at this year’s OGP Global Summit. In Brasilia (2012) we were 200, in London (2013) 600, and when we meet this week in Mexico we’ll be over 1000 from 94 countries. Una gran parte hablará español pues 656 de ellos vendrán de la región.
Starting off OGP events with a civil society day has become an important partnership tradition. It’s a day to (re) connect with friends and colleagues from around the world, to make new connections, to strategize and learn and even vent a little bit.
This CSO day we have a really packed and interesting agenda. In the morning for example we will have 20 parallel discussions addressing the next frontiers in open government, followed by a reflection on these by civil society leaders from across the globe. Members of the civil society Steering Committee will present the first ever OGP Government Champion Award, voted on by civil society and presented to the government champion that has gone over and beyond what OGP asks for. We will also present the results of the 2015 OGP Civil Society Survey that – together with other data sources like the IRM - tell the story on how OGP is delivering for civil society. In the afternoon we have 38 sessions organized by the community on topics ranging from hacking political corruption via the role of infomediaries, to the question of if OGP can tackle cultural exclusion...continue reading here.


The Open Government Guide Special Edition: Implementing the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda

Tania Sànchez, Open Gov Guide Coordinator

The overarching theme of the 2015 Mexico OGP Global Summit next week is the role of open government in accelerating the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Early efforts to link these two mutually reinforcing agendas are already under way with the OGP Steering Committee’s call to civil society and government to endorse the Joint Declaration on Open Government for the Implementation of the 2030 Agenda. By endorsing the Declaration, governments commit to use OGP national action plans “to adopt commitments that serve as effective tools to promote transparent and accountable implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.”

Many OGP countries are already tackling these challenges in their national action plans by promoting transparency and accountability, empowering citizens and civil society, fighting corruption, and harnessing new technologies in specific sectors directly related to the development goals. This means that there is already a lot to learn from each other.
..continue reading here
Don't miss the OGP Working Groups at the Summit!

Keep a look out for the five OGP thematic working groups (Open DataAccess to Information, Openness in Natural ResourcesFiscal Openness, and Legislative Openness) at the Summit. The working groups are a very useful resource for connecting government and civil society reformers working on similar issues to share experiences, lessons, and best practices in the service of stronger action plans. We encourage you to get involved with the working groups so you can tap into their expertise and connect with your peers.  Be sure to attend their sessions and feel free to introduce yourselves to the working group leads or get in touch with Support Unit staff to explore how they can help you. 

Final meeting of the #OGP15 Planning Committee - ready to go!


Follow the Summit!

IMPORTANT: There will not be a registration booth at the venue. Participants must collect their accreditations at the booths located in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Click here for more information.


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