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La Libertad Design Report 2018-2020

La Libertad’s 2018-2020 action plan presents an opportunity to improve citizen participation in the region via the platform “Decide La Libertad”. Citizens provided inputs during the co-creation process of the action plan, but the government did not publish a reasoned response to public and civil society contributions. Moving forward, La Libertad could strengthen citizen participation and increase the commitment’s ambition level.

Table 1. At a glance

Member since: 2016
Action plan under review: Second (2018-2020)
Type of report: Design
Number of commitments:  6

Action plan development
Is there a multi-stakeholder forum? Yes
Level of public influence:  Consult
Acted contrary to OGP process: N/A1

Action plan design
Commitments relevant to OGP values:   5 (83%)
Transformative commitments:  2 (33%)
Potentially starred:  2 (33%)

Action plan implementation
Starred commitments: N/A
Completed commitments: N/A
Commitments with major progress: N/A
Commitments with outstanding progress: N/A

*DIOG: Did it Open Government

The Open Government Partnership (OGP) is a global partnership that brings together government reformers and civil society leaders to co-create action plans to make more inclusive, receptive, and accountable governments. The Independent Reporting Mechanism (IRM) monitors each action plan to ensure that governments follow through on their commitments. La Libertad joined OGP in 2016 and has since implemented one action plan. This report assesses the design of La Libertad’s second action plan.

Overview of the action plan

La Libertad submitted its second action plan in December 2018, just before the new administration took office. La Libertad’s current action plan has a significantly different approach as compared to the action plan implemented in the pilot phase (2016-2018). The new plan moves away from the sectorial emphasis in the co-creation of commitments (these were previously created by government sectors – such as agriculture or labor – together with relevant civil society organizations) towards a cross-cutting approach to incorporating OGP values in at least five of the six commitments. This action plan’s focus is to strengthen the region’s civic space in terms of informative, participatory and accountability mechanisms, as well as civil society’s capacities to use such mechanisms. However, given their weak link to specific policy areas, the potential impact of certain commitments is not ambitious enough to be transformative.

The leadership of the action plan was taken on by the multi-stakeholder forum “Regional Open Government Council” (CRGA in Spanish). Unlike the pilot phase, the CRGA will implement a commitment monitoring mechanism.

However, according to the mandate of the CRGA, the Planning Deputy Management Office of the Regional Government of La Libertad (GRLL in Spanish) is in charge of designing action plans with support from other state agencies and civil society organizations. The empowerment of the Planning Deputy Management Office within the CRGA for this plan has had a positive impact on aligning the action plan to OGP values. Yet, citizen and civil society participation has been limited and the commitments have not been ambitious enough to be transformative.

In terms of the design of the current action plan, stakeholders that are not a part of the forum had the opportunity to observe, present recommendations and influence the decision-making process in two co-creation workshops, six meetings of the sectorial advisory councils and one session led by the Regional Coordination Council. However, the government did not widely broadcast these sessions and the number of citizens that participated in them was very limited. There was also not a clear link between commitment creation and prioritization process or a public feedback mechanism. The process appears to have been highly influenced by the Planning Deputy Management’s priorities. Thus, the IRM researcher assigned the “consult” rank to the design process, using the IAP2 spectrum. With regards to civil society within CRGA, the process reached the “involve” level, meaning the government did clarify how the public comments were addressed.

The action plan includes six commitments, five of which are relevant to OGP values. These are all linked – to different extents – to the online platform “Decide La Libertad”, which was set in place in 2018 by the regional government as a digital participation space. Two commitments have transformative potential impact, one has moderate, and three have minor potential impact. For future action plans, the IRM researcher recommends that commitments linked to the platform Decide La Libertad are cut down to one or two ambitious commitments.

Table 2. Noteworthy commitments

Commitment description Moving forward Status at the end of implementation cycle
 1. Decide La Libertad – Increasing citizen participation

Create a platform to centralize all citizen participation processes to promote increased citizen participation and collaboration.

 

The IRM researcher recommends to prioritize this commitment and include it in future action plans, strengthening the platform as a key element of open government in La Libertad. Note: this will be assessed at the end of the action plan cycle

 

2. Increase the regional government’s accountability

Include an accountability component within the “Decide La Libertad” portal and create a response mechanism to address requests.

 

The IRM researcher recommends that information disclosed as part of this commitment includes issues that are relevant to the citizenry, including progress in public works, disclosing easy-to-understand indicators. Note: this will be assessed at the end of the action plan cycle

 

Recommendations

The IRM recommendations aim to inform the development of the next action plan and guide implementation of the current action plan.

Table 3. Five key IRM recommendations

 

Effectively engage senior officers of the regional government.

 

Increase the quality of stakeholder engagement to prevent them to oppose the OGP process. To this end, the government could ensure equal participation of the government and civil society in the forum.

 

Promote the election of civil society representatives in the CRGA.

 

Consider the establishment of Decide La Libertad as the main tool to manage open government initiatives, including the creation and implementation of action plans.

 

Cluster commitments that include related activities: consider the importance of including certain sectorial commitments.

 

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Filed under: IRM IRM Report

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