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Action plan – Gyumri, Armenia, 2021 – 2026



Action Plan: Action plan – Gyumri, Armenia, 2021 – 2026

Action Plan Submission: 2021
Action Plan End: October 2026

Lead Institution: Gyumri Municipality



Oct 2026

Date Submitted

22nd October 2021


The Government of Armenia joined the Open Government Partnership (OGP) Initiative in 2011. Local government reform has always been in the interest of the OGP agenda. The principles of democracy, good governance, and the reduction of corruption, participatory governance have been applied not only to the executive but also to the legislature and local communities.

In 2020, the OGP-Armenia Secretariat kicked off meetings and discussions with the large communities.  During the regular online meetings in June-August 2020 Vanadzor and Gyumri Municipalities, OGP-Armenia Secretariat, Civil Society Partners, USAID, UNDP, Council of Europe, GIZ, and other stakeholders agreed on putting efforts to establish effective dialogue for the Vanadzor-Gyumri’s integration into the Local OGP community. In October 2020, the mayors of Vanadzor and Gyumri submit an application/EOI to the Local-OGP Support Unite for considering a joint application of Vanadzor-Gyumri (consortium) for the Local-OGP membership. Finally, the consortium of these communities officially has become the Local-OGP community’s member.

Despite the challenges of 2020, the Covid-19, and Azerbaijan’s rampant war against Artsakh, the communities of Vanadzor and Gyumri have kicked off the co-creation processes.

In April, Vanadzor and Gyumri announced an open call-invitation for cooperation. The call was directed to local stakeholders and followed by an open call for the proposals collections (Vanadzor: , Gyumri: ). Eight main directions were proposed. About 16 CSOs from two communities expressed their willingness to participate.

On 29th July, with the assistance of the OGP-Armenia Secretariat, EC Office, the Ministry of Territorial Administration was held a joint (hybrid) meeting of Vanadzor and Gyumri communities’ municipalities and CSOs representatives. The participants discussed the proposals together, classified them into digital, innovation, and participatory.

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 following policy areas are the long-term vision for both municipalities:

  1. Direct democracy measures in municipal service provision;
  2. Participatory policy design and implementation;
  3. Outsourced and subsidized municipal programs (grants) to civil society organizations;
  4. Monitoring of budget expenditures and progress;
  5. Environment and ecosystem sustainability;
  6. Labor rights and access to decent employment;
  7. Access and quality of basic services towards a smarter city;
  8. Effective management and distribution of resources;
  9. Urban development and area management.

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

The following are some of the major achievements in the platform approach bench-marked by both municipalities:

  • Organization of regular public hearings (town halls) allowing citizen participation in decision making while designing the 5-year development programs, municipal budgets, annual work plans, subventions, etc.
  • Online gateway for citizen e-participation via official websites.
  • Ensured transparency of information on the official websites with the regular publication of drafts of Councils’ and Mayors’ decisions, and allowing citizens to provide feedback on the drafts, service delivery procedures and fees, tax liabilities, reports, municipal property management, etc.
  • Online submission of applications, requests and complaints, and tracking the status.
  • Online reporting of issues in the municipality.
  • Online broadcasting of council meetings and allowing citizens to submit questions and feedback to the council members during the meeting.
  • Citizen Offices established in municipalities allowing for service provision to citizens in accordance with a one-stop-shop approach, thus improving accessibility, transparency, and quality of service delivery by the municipality.

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

In 2021 will be finalized 441 communities uniting the process under 37 community clusters. Gyumri and Vanadzor play the main role here, as some communities will join to Gyumri and Vanadzor communities. These and other communities will meet challenges of harmonization of joining jurisdictions, activation and integration of them to the large communities life and reconsideration of the strategic processes and actions in accordance with the current needs.

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

The Vanadzor-Gyumri communities are one of the largest and progressive communities in Armenia. In recent years, communities have stood out for initiatives that have helped increase the transparency of local governments, improve participatory processes.

Community representatives, CSO partners took into account the available community experience and resources, responsibilities, local characteristics, the current economic and political situation in the country, as well as forecasts of future development.

As of 1 February 2021, these two communities and the Municipality of Pila (Poland) – signed the EU Alliance for Sustainable Green Governance (CPC ALLIANCE) ABC.GoV. The program includes areas such as improving policies and instruments for sustainable urban management, creating a clean environment, green public transport, recycling, and building the capacity of local workers for the upcoming years.

All stakeholders of Vanadzor and Gyumri communities agreed for overcoming economic, social and educational development problems in the communities, so it is necessary to provide institutional mechanisms for democratic actions.

Communities are seeking opportunities to partner globally and horizontally with other forward-looking municipalities and to peer-learn on modern practices, tools of citizen engagement, budget and procurement transparency, and institutionalize open and participatory governance on the local level.

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

This Action plan envisaged commitments that significantly will improve the transparency, governance mechanisms and public oversight of community resources. At first, these commitments will clarify and identify communities’ resources (property – not property), then will define the mechanisms for their management, donations and utilization. This intends the creating an open community resources registry.

The structure of the community budgets, its inputs, and outputs are always subject of interest for the community members and international organizations. Thus, the introduction of an “interactive” or “open data” format for presenting community budgets can significantly improve public perception of community budgets, transparency, and increase trust in community authorities.

Environmental issues and the safety of public transport have remained the focus of attention for many years. Public controlling of transportation and participation in improvement processes could help to ensure a safer transport system.

The “green” transport commitment would significantly improve the environmental situation – public control over public transportation.

Constructive dialogue and cooperation with CSOs, Private Sector and International organizations could guarantee reaching ambitious agenda and for the best fulfillment of the undertaken commitments.

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

Both municipalities are members of the Union of Communities of Armenia – a national network/platform to share and promote good governance principles among local self-governance units. As part of the decentralization reform of the Ministry of Territorial Administration and Infrastructure, the cities have advanced participatory budgeting processes and installed live broadcasts of community council meetings. This ambitious progress has been done by mayors from different political parties and views, so definitely this Action Plan will be in line with the priorities and actions of the new Administrations and will have the support of CSOs. In spite of upcoming elections in the municipalities (administrations and CSO community) are tackled to the commitments, which will be fundamentally anchored in the Memorandum regardless of the election results.

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.

  • Gyumri Municipality

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

The Administrations of Gyumri and Vanadzor are closely and actively cooperating with the local CSOs, Donor organizations and OGP-Armenia Secretariat. All actions of open co-creation and discussion have been done and coordinated by the Point of contact from both municipalities (Lilya Davtyan for Vanadzor) and (Levon Barsegyan for Gyumri)) and OGP Government Point of Contact (Lilya Afrikyan).

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.

In April, Vanadzor and Gyumri announced an open call-invitation for cooperation. The call was directed to local stakeholders and followed by an open call for the proposals collections (Vanadzor: , Gyumri: ). 8 main directions were proposed. About 16 CSOs from two communities expressed their willingness to participate.

On 29th July, with the assistance of the OGP-Armenia Secretariat, EC Office, the Ministry of Territorial Administration was held a joint (hybrid) meeting of Vanadzor and Gyumri communities’ municipalities and CSOs representatives. The participants discussed the proposals together, classified them into digital, innovation, and participatory.

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

In March-April of 2021, with the support of the OGP-Armenia Secretariat and the UNDP-Armenia office were organized a series of skills development and capacity building courses for the partners of Vanadzor and Gyumri communities’ administrations and Civil Society Organizations, schools, medical institutes and journalists.

The trainings’ component presented the general concept of the Open Government and the role/importance of the electronic democratic instruments developed in Armenia (also during the Covid-19).  A total of 70 participants were trained.

During the co-creation process, the CSOs’ oriented on the peoples’ disabilities were targeted. Besides the open call invitations on the communities’ official websites, they were invited to participate in co-creation processes by phone and separate emails. The joint (hybrid) meeting of Vanadzor and Gyumri communities’ municipalities and CSOs representatives were held in Yerevan ( The place for the meeting and the accommodation were considered by taking into account the standing, walking, rising, or other activities for the participants with disabilities.

Who participated in these spaces?

The Vanadzor and Gyumri municipalities Administrations, CSOs, teachers and other pedagogic representatives, medical institute representatives, Mass Media representatives and other youth representatives.

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?

After the approval of the Memorandum of understanding and the elections in the Communities, the Administrations will form working groups, or multi-stakeholder forums for the implementation, monitoring and evaluation of the action plan, support for the awareness rising, and trainings for the special commitments.

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

After the elections in the Communities, the Administrations will process the Midterm and the End-term Reports. Preliminary independent Monitoring evaluation is planned from the partner CSOs (from Gyumri and Vanadzor). The exact formation will be clarified during the upcoming months.

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?

The following activities are planned by both municipalities:

  1. The face to face meetings,
  2. MSF regular meetings,
  3. Separate meeting on the thematic commitments,
  4. Townhall meetings,
  5. Zoom meetings,
  6. Seminars and events,
  7. TV programs,
  8. Social Media activities,
  9. Coordination with the International Organizations and Donor community,
  10. Other activities

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

The Administrations will process the Midterm and the End-term Reports.

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

The Administrations will share the End-term Report on their Official Websites and Social Media channels.

Endorsement from Non-Governmental Stakeholders

  • Levon Barseghyan – ”Asparez ” Journalists Club NGO
  • Ara Sukisayan – “Childish-youthful undertakings Support Centre “The children society” NGO (“CHSSC” NGO)
  • Hripsime Petrosyan – “Efficient Governance and Community Development” NGO
  • Gharib Harutyunyan – ”Kompas” educational, scientific and advisory center” NGO
  • Hasmik Mkhitaryan – president of the ” Progress of Gyumri” NGO
  • Seyran Martirosyan – ”The A.D. Sakharov Armenian Human Rights Protection Center” NGO

Memorandum of Intentions – Vanadzor-Gyumri Local OGP Action Plan

Web Post – Meeting of the working group on anti corruption policies and open government took place in a hybrid format

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