30.10.13 // Institutional Strengthening, News

ACIJ Participates in the Open Government Partnership Summit in London

The Open Government Partnership (OGP) is a multilateral volunteer initiative which is working to improve governmental performance, encouraging civil participation and improving the feedback governments provide their citizens.

Renzo Lavin, co-director of ACIJ and coordinator of the regional network of the TPA Initiative (Transparency Participation Latin America), co-organised and participated in the open debate Regulation Entities and their relationship with the People which focused on discussing how the regulation entities could involve citizens and other actors to move toward an Open Government.

Other discussion participants included Fezeka Baliso, from the General Assembly of South Africa; Heidi Mendoza, representative of the Commission of Audit of the Philippines; Vinod Rai, ex- Treasury General of India; Quentin Reed, Independent Consultant; Paulo Roberto Simao, from the Tribunal of Auditors from the Brazil Union; Marko Sosic, of the Alternative Institute; and Aranzazu Guillan Montero, representative of U4 centre of Anti-corruption.

Using a multidisciplinary board, experiences of the involvement of regulation entities with other groups were shared, comparing discoveries and perspectives utilised to manage it, with discussions about the challenges and critical factors. The object was to identify specific actions, new comparisons and strengths to improve the roll of regulation entities within Open Government.

During the meeting, held from Thursday 31 of October until Friday 1st of November, one million participants were hosted, including government representatives, multilateral bodies, non-governmental organisations and civilians. The 61participating governments agreed on more than one thousand commitments which they intend to carry out to improve transparency, open discussion and citizen participation. At a global level, some points to highlight from the summit are:

  • Each government that participated announced a new and ambitious Open Government commitment, which will be integrated in the next OGP action plan or greater commitment in their own plan.
  • The Bright Spots partnership, where seven individuals from different countries shared their success stories in a seven minute presentation. The public had an opportunity to vote for the most inspiring presentation.
  • The first progress reports were launched from the eight founding members of OGP- Brazil, Indonesia, Mexico, Norway, Philippines, South Africa and the United States. These were prepared by a new and rigorous communication instrument – the Independent Reporting Mechanism- a unique body which produces a detailed explanation of the progress of each country in the fulfilment of their commitment to OGP.
  • The implementation of new Open Government Prizes to recognise public programs in countries participating in OGP for their efforts to strengthen the opening and maintenance of communications. The 2014 summit focused on the theme of citizen participation.

ACIJ (as coordinator of the TPA initiative), along with U4 Anti-corruption Centre, the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the World Bank Institute, and with the collaboration of Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the International Organisation of Supreme Audit Institutions (INTOSAI) organized a panel at the summit.

Watch the video of the panel.

Official Site: Opengovpartnership.org