Guidance for Countries Joining OGP After April 2012
The Open Government Partnership (OGP) is a new multilateral initiative that aims to secure concrete commitments from governments to promote transparency, empower citizens, fight corruption, and harness new technologies to strengthen governance.
OGP was launched on September 20th 2011 on the margins of the UN General Assembly in New York and is now fully operational. On that day, the founding governments endorsed the OGP Declaration of Principles and presented their action plans, with concrete commitments putting the principles into practice.
A group of new governments that expressed their commitment to openness and their intent to join the Partnership between September-December 2011, and these governments have since presented their country action plans at the 2012 1st Annual High-Level Conference of OGP in Brasilia, Brazil.
Governments that have expressed their intent to join the Partnership from January 2012 onwards should take the following steps in order to formally join OGP:
1. Initiate consultations with domestic stakeholders, consistent with the principles of the Open Government Partnership
As part of participation in the Open Government Partnership, governments develop and deliver an action plan with concrete new commitments on open government. Governments should undertake broad public consultation to inform their OGP commitments, consistent with the principles of consultation in the Open Government Partnership. The consultation process should begin as soon as possible after the government has expressed its intent to join OGP, so that the government has sufficient time to develop an action plan with broad public input.
2. Use the networking mechanism to develop ideas for concrete commitments
Make use of the OGP networking mechanism to connect with other governments (peer to peer) and other relevant third-party expertise and service providers (NGO and private sector) in order to develop ideas for commitments and gather expertise for implementation. The networking mechanism has engaged a stable of government, private sector and non‐profit entities that are ready and willing to share their ideas, technologies and platforms with OGP governments to help engage citizens and improve government efficiency and responsiveness. Please contact the mechanism at firstname.lastname@example.org.
3. Begin the process of developing concrete country commitments
Based on input from public consultations and government discussions, start to draft the new country commitments which will be presented in your country’s OGP action plan. Each commitment should have its own short paragraph identifying what the commitment is; how it will contribute to greater transparency, accountability and/or citizen engagement; who will be involved in implementing the commitment; and what the government hopes to accomplish by making this commitment. Key implementation benchmarks and related timelines, where possible, should be identified for each commitment indicating what will be accomplished during year one, year two and each additional year of implementation as relevant. On the OGP website you can find further details on country action plans, a template, and instructions for uploading commitments into the OGP website.
4. Participate in an OGP peer engagement meeting
To encourage the sharing of good practices and innovations and maintain high standards, OGP countries participate in peer engagement meetings with other participating countries and the OGP Steering Committee during the commitment development process. OGP will alert new countries with sufficient advance notice when these meetings are to be held each year. Come prepared to share your draft commitments, reflect on your government’s experiences to date, and to engage other countries on their draft plans.
5. Deliver an action plan and endorse the OGP Declaration at the next annual meeting
Countries will formally join OGP at a high-level meeting in London April 22-24 2013, when new participating governments endorse the OGP Declaration and deliver their country action plans. The high-level meeting will be followed by an additional meeting in late October 2013, the 2nd Annual High-Level Conference of the Open Government Partnership, in which governments, civil society organizations, private sector and other stakeholders gather for a lively exchange on open government practices and experiences. For more information on this meeting, please contact OGP at email@example.com