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Action plan – Aragón, Spain, 2021 – 2023

Plan de acción - Aragón, España, 2021-2023



Action Plan: Action plan – Aragón, Spain, 2021 – 2023

Action Plan Submission: 2021
Action Plan End: March 2023

Lead Institution: Directorate General for Open Government and Social Innovation, Plena Inclusión Aragón [Aragon Full Inclusion], Plataforma del Tercer Sector [Third Sector Platform], Commissioner of the Government of Aragon for Agenda 2030, Federation of Towns and Provinces of Aragon



March 2023

Date Submitted

30th September 2021


This Action Plan is the logical next step in the citizen participation and transparency policies we have been implementing in the past few years. We now aim to take them even further in our efforts to make the Government of Aragon an open, empathetic and innovative institution, a place where the ideas and talent of civil society are considered not only a necessary democratic liability but also an asset that can provide added value in terms of enhanced rights or better public services.

However, the idiosyncrasy of our region makes it difficult for all Aragonese collectives to exercise full citizenship and poses a challenge for their participation in public policies and the integration of Open Government principles. Therefore, with the aim of continuing to progress in the mainstreaming of these values in our territory, it is essential to create or bolster programmes and actions related to our priority focuses: online citizen participation, social design processes, new alliances for innovation and under-represented groups (people with disabilities and reading difficulties, women, children and youths).

The Government of Aragon, as well as our partners, with which we have a long history of collaboration, are fully committed to this project. We are certain that the sound relationships we have built will be crucial in this regard, and will become even stronger in this period.

A variety of agents in government and civil society were involved in its co-creation. Throughout the entire process, civil servants from numerous departments, representatives of the third sector and other citizen organisations, as well as academics and the private sector, all actively participated in drawing up the Plan. Open consultations with the general public were also held. The outcome is a Plan that makes it possible to research and experiment with new models of public action aimed at confronting the challenges of this territory in a more just, pluralistic and sustainable manner.

Open Government Challenges, Opportunities and Strategic Vision

This subsection details the Open Government Strategic Vision in your local area that should guide the commitments for the action plan period.

What is the long-term vision for open government in your context and jurisdiction?

The Government of Aragon has set up a specific Directorate General for Open Government and Social Innovation, based on three main themes:

Transparency and the Right to Know. The right to ask the Government, to access and use data, to receive a response, to understand the Government Plan and to check it…

Participation and the Right to Decide. The right to express your opinion, propose ideas for improving a law or plan, to influence public policies and to receive a response…

Social Innovation and the Right to Do. The right to co-produce government, the right to produce your town, the right to experience, the right to learn by doing, the right to make mistakes…

The most innovative vision of the DG revolves around the LAAAB, its laboratory of democratic innovation. The Laboratory has its own physical space and also virtual spaces, in which it strives to produce innovations that further develop the three themes mentioned above.

What are the achievements in open government to date (for example, recent open government reforms)?

In 2008, the Government of Aragon became a pioneer when it introduced the Open Government concept in the political agenda by creating the Department for Citizen Participation. Progress continued in 2012 with the Open Data Aragón portal and in 2015 with the Law on the Transparency of Public Activity and Citizen Participation of Aragon. In 2017 it passed the Law on Public Ethics and Integrity and the Law on Open Accounts of Aragon. In 2018, the Laboratorio de Aragón Gobierno Abierto (LAAAB) [Open Government of Aragon Laboratory] was established to create public policies jointly. The Aragón Gobierno Abierto website was also created to facilitate the digital governance of processes, and we initiated the Collaborative Design of Public Services between civil servants and citizens, using design thinking methods.

In order to facilitate the participation of collectives with reading comprehension difficulties, we created the Gobierno Fácil [Easy Government] project in collaboration with CERMI-Aragon in 2019 to generate better services and public policies that are universally accessible. In 2020, the Government of Aragon launched the citizen initiative Frena la curva [flatten the curve] to channel solidarity-based citizens’ initiatives in response to COVID-19. Frena la curva is a paradigm of the openness of the government and of collaborative work that managed to spread organically, in two months, from Aragon to 22 countries, involving administrations, companies, NGOs and activists.

What are the current challenges/areas for improvement in open government that the jurisdiction wishes to tackle?

In the field of citizen participation we need to focus our efforts on better integration of groups that are currently under-represented in our democratic system: people with disabilities, with reading comprehension difficulties and those at risk of social exclusion, women, children and young people.

In terms of transparency, the public needs effective access to information through clearer communication and also by ensuring that the transparency portal is not filled with so much information that it has the negative effect of confusing users.

As regards innovation, we must overcome the isolation of certain hierarchical and technocratic public institutions that sometimes do not pay sufficient attention to the actual needs of individuals. Building alliances that generate ecosystems of innovative institutions requires granting a greater role to citizens in the co-design of public policies.

What are the medium-term open government goals that the government wants to achieve?

Under-represented groups must be increasingly integrated into participation processes, and it is crucial in this regard to create ecosystems that bring these groups together: migrants, youths, children, people with disabilities, women, LGBTIQ.

Furthermore, in an extensive region like Aragon, citizen participation must also be available to those living in rural settings, physically and by improving the online participation applications available to the public.

The progress made when it comes to transparency must go hand-in-hand with improved communication and clear language to be used by the administration in its relations with the public.

All of these elements must come together in the field of social innovation by creating formal and informal alliances with organisations in the public, private, social and independent citizen sectors, united to generate better public policies.

How does this action plan contribute to achieve the Open Government Strategic Vision?

The three commitments undertaken in this action plan are directly related to the three themes on which our open government strategic vision is based:

  • Transparency and the Right to Know: commitment to accountability and transparency.
  • Participation and the Right to Decide: commitment to integrating under-represented collectives.
  • Social Innovation and the Right to Do: commitment to innovation ecosystems and new alliance models

How does the open government strategic vision contribute to the accomplishment of the current administration’s overall policy goals?

The general objectives of the Government of Aragon fully coincide with the strategic vision of Open Government, both in terms of transparency in the monitoring of those objectives via the VisualGob tool and from a participation perspective, which enables the public to voice their opinions on regulations before they are passed (prior public consultation) and on draft plans or legal provisions (participation processes or crowdlaw). In the field of social innovation, the creation of alliances among public, private and social institutions and citizen collaboration are fundamental concepts for reinforcing the legitimacy and proximity of the government.

Engagement and Coordination in the Open Government Strategic Vision and OGP Action Plan

Please list the lead institutions responsible for the implementation of this OGP action plan.

  • Directorate General for Open Government and Social Innovation
  • Plena Inclusión Aragón [Aragon Full Inclusion]
  • Plataforma del Tercer Sector [Third Sector Platform]
  • Commissioner of the Government of Aragon for Agenda 2030
  • Federation of Towns and Provinces of Aragon

What kind of institutional arrangements are in place to coordinate between government agencies and departments to implement the OGP action plan?

Initially, no formal agreements are expected to be established to coordinate the implementation of the Action Plan; instead, these would be replaced by relationships of mutual trust and fully transparent management. However, regular follow-up meetings will be held with all the members of the steering committee, complying with the rules applicable to the announcement of meetings and management of joint organisations in the Government of Aragon. Likewise, all the information about implementation of the Plan will be available on the website

What kind of spaces have you used or created to enable the collaboration between government and civil society in the co-creation and implementation of this action plan? Mention both offline and online spaces.

A steering committee has been set up for the Action Plan, composed of stakeholders in government, NGOs and other civil society groups. As a result of the situation arising from the COVID-19 pandemic, most of the work has been done online using methods like Zoom conference calls and collaborative documents on Google Drive, or the Aragon Open Government website’s citizen editor. The public was able to attend one informative session on the process, in addition to using the aforementioned collaborative work tools.

The first meeting of the entire steering committee was a session led by a facilitator specialised in citizen processes, in which scoring, voting and prioritisation were the dynamics used to reach a consensus. In-person themed roundtables were arranged with experts in a range of sectors (from both government and civil society), developing the three strategic lines that will define the commitments.

What measures did you take to ensure diversity of representation (including vulnerable or marginalized populations) in these spaces?

The steering committee includes stakeholders representing diverse collectives and organisations that work with vulnerable individuals, given that the inclusion of those groups is one of the strategic cornerstones of the Action Plan. These stakeholders have actively participated in all the co-creation phases.

In addition, individuals belonging to these collectives, as members of organised society, as well as members of the informal public, were directly invited to the online informative session.

Finally, all online and in-person spaces for participation related to this process are fully accessible to people with disabilities or reading comprehension difficulties.

Who participated in these spaces?

  • Government institutions
  • Development agencies
  • Academic institutions
  • Other educational institutions
  • Foundations
  • Federations
  • Associations
  • Multilateral international organisations
  • NGOs and social entities
  • Co-operatives

How many groups participated in these spaces?


How many public-facing meetings were held in the co-creation process?


How will government and non-governmental stakeholders continue to collaborate through the implementation of the action plan?

Through the Directorate General for Open Government and Social Innovation, the Government of Aragon has a close relationship with all its stakeholders. Normally, these relationships need not be formalised in contracts or other agreements, and instead are based on collaboration and mutual trust. However, on certain occasions these relationships do need to be formalised in an agreement, such as the arrangement with UNICEF Aragon for the implementation of children’s participation, or through the funding granted by the Instituto Aragonés de la Mujer [Aragonese Institute for Women], which comes from the State Treaty against gender violence, for implementation of the Aspasia programme for political participation with gender perspective. As regards Gobierno Fácil [Easy Government], there are two types of collaboration in place with Plena Inclusión Aragón [Aragon Full Inclusion]: one of an informal nature and the other, an indirect subsidy granted by applying to the Government of Aragon subsidies allocated from income tax revenues for the “Accessible Spaces” project, which includes activities related to Gobierno Fácil.

Therefore, based on the diverse nature of the projects, work will continue by means of informal relationships and by entering into treaties, contracts, aid allocated in the government’s budget or through competitive grants for the development of the objectives of the Open Government Plan

Please describe the independent Monitoring Body you have identified for this plan.

Grupo de Investigación en Gobierno, Administración y Políticas Públicas (GIGAPP) [Research group in government, administration and public policies], an academic initiative based on openness, rigor, applied knowledge and innovation values.

Provide the contact details for the independent monitoring body.

What types of activities will you have in place to discuss progress on commitments with stakeholders?

Online and in-person meetings, workshops and ongoing updates of the accountability tools of the Government of Aragon (Transparency Portal, VisualGob)

How will you regularly check in on progress with implementing agencies?

Quarterly meetings.

How will you share the results of your monitoring efforts with the public?

Over social media, portals and websites linked to the Directorate General for Open Government and Social Innovation. Public feedback sessions are also planned: one at the start of the process, where the Action Plan will be introduced, and another at the end of the process to share the outcomes achieved.

Endorsement from Non-Governmental Stakeholders

  • Millán Diaz, Professor and researcher, University of Zaragoza
  • María Jesús Luna Serreta, Director, Fundación Seminario de Investigación para la Paz [Research Seminar for Peace Foundation]
  • David Corellano, Coordinator of UNICEF Aragón, UNICEF
  • Pilar Machín, Vice-president of UNICEF Aragón, UNICEF
  • José Luis Jericó, Managing Director, Agencia de Desarrollo de Ejea de los Caballeros [Ejea de los Caballeros Development Agency]
  • Martín Nicolás, Secretary General, Federation of Towns and Provinces of Aragon
  • Eva Tomás, Professor and researcher, University of Zaragoza
  • Francisco Galán, President, Plataforma del Tercer Sector [Third Sector Platform]
  • Teodoro Corchero, President, Consejo Aragonés de las Personas Mayores [Aragonese Council for the Elderly]
  • Javier Aribau Giménez, Manager, Fundación El Tranvía [El Tranvía Foundation]
  • Santiago Aguado, Project coordinator, Plena Inclusión Aragón [Aragon Full Inclusion]
  • Ainhoa Estrada, Facilitator and educator, Atelier de Ideas
  • Carla Gutierrez, Project coordinator, Plena Inclusión Aragón [Aragon Full Inclusion]
  • Estefanía Serrano, Deputy Director of Innovation and Future Studies, University of Zaragoza
  • Daniel Torres Burriel, Expert in UX – unorganised citizenship, Torres Burriel
  • Daniel Latorre, Unorganised citizenship

Plan de acción para la alianza de Gobierno Abierto

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