Working Group

Access to Information

  • About

About

Access to Information Working Group

Access to information (ATI) is a fundamental human right that has the power to improve governance and lives by assisting public administration to become more transparent, accountable, and efficient and increasing citizen confidence and participation. Increasing transparency and access to information is at the core of the Open Government Partnership values and principles and crucial in addressing the most pressing social needs, solving public problems and improving the effectiveness of government institutions.  The OGP was launched “to provide an international platform for domestic reformers committed to making their governments more open, accountable, and responsive to citizens.” Taking this into consideration, and responding to the need to create further opportunities for learning across OGP participants, as well as to encourage countries to make stronger and more ambitious commitments as part of their OGP action plans, a diverse group of countries and civil society organizations have combined efforts to participate and lead the OGP Access to Information Working Group (ATI WG). 

 

Goals and Objectives

The main aims of the ATI WG are:

  • To become a resource that helps government in designing and implementing effective and ambitious commitments regarding ATI and disclosure of relevant information.
  • To support the participation of key stakeholders, ATI oversight agencies, networks, and civil society in the OGP ATI dialogue.

As well as:

  • To promote best practices and coordinate efforts to promote access to public information with OGP member states; and
  • To promote the right of access to information as a catalyst for generating useful public knowledge, contributing to building more open institutions and accountability.

The right of access to information is at different stages, and its legal development and implementation vary widely internationally. Thus, the ATI WG looks to engage at key moments in the fulfilment of four objectives (listed in order of priority):

  • To support governments that are developing their commitments or making new commitments around access to information. The ATI WG promotes the adoption of ambitious commitments that advance the national ATI agenda and lead to greater transparency and openness.
  • To promote an inclusive dialogue where multiple stakeholders, particularly ATI oversight bodies and civil society leaders, participate in the OGP stages (from consultation to evaluation), and actively engage in permanent national dialogue mechanisms.
  • To serve as a resource and support for government agencies and civil society groups that are trying to fulfill their ATI-related commitments.
  • To provide direction and support to ensure full compliance with the access to information eligibility criteria to governments which are not presently part of OGP but interested in joining or which are seeking to improve their ATI-related scores.