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Taking the OGP Co-Creation Process Online – Developing & Drafting Commitments

Cómo llevar el proceso de cocreación de OGP a un espacio virtual - Desarrollo y diseño de compromisos

Transposer en ligne le processus de co-création du PGO - Développement et rédaction des engagements

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Developing and Drafting Commitments

Once a set of potential ideas for commitments have been agreed, there are several elements involved in developing these further. This ranges from:

  • Awareness raising and public or behind-closed-doors advocacy to convince decision-makers to adopt changes in policies, programs or practices or adopt new ones.
  • Engaging technical experts, intended beneficiaries or users, and other stakeholders in designing the commitment and agreeing its focus, evaluating technical and financial feasibility, identifying key milestones and indicators needed to lay the foundations for keeping eventual implementation on track, and exploring complementarities, redundancies and contradictions with existing policies, programs or practices.
  • Drafting commitments in detail describing the scope of the problem, the details of the commitment and how it will address the problems described, identifying lead and supporting implementers, specifying milestones, timelines and indicators, and identifying resourcing.

Developing commitments might require a combination of awareness raising activities, online meetings and workshops, and deliberative processes to weigh evidence, make trade-offs and decide what focus specific commitments could have. Eventually details of the commitment have to be put in writing, and this often requires some form of collaborative drafting.

Collaborative drafting of commitments can take different levels of involvement: from a group of co-authors who go through each portion of drafting a commitment template together, writing as a group with one voice, to a group with a primary author who does the majority of the work and then receives comments or edits from collaborators. The Writing Center at UNC offers a good overview of the collaborative writing process. Adapted excerpts from their guidance are provided below.

When to use collaborative drafting

  • When there is a group of people who can contribute to shaping a commitment or policy and can agree upon norms of collaboration and expected outputs
  • Done online, generally the preferred approach is to use collaborative drafting when there are fewer primary authors who take the lead, followed by comments and edits from others

Guiding principles for a collaborative commitment drafting process

  • Roles and responsibilities: Identify who will assume the roles of primary author and initial collaborators. Clarify what policy or editorial decisions will be jointly-made by collaborators, and what decisions will be subject to formal government approval processes.
  • Managing large groups: If drafting is open to a large group, consider creating a code of conduct to guide behavior and appoint a moderator to serve as a resource to collaborators, answer process questions or intervene in the case of online harassment or intimidation.
  • Preparing information and evidence: Consider outputs from crowdsourcing effort, prior consultative meetings, data and evidence, pre-existing policies and processes that will need to inform the initial draft of commitments or policies.
  • Establish a process for collaboration: Determine who will improve initial drafts, what guidance they will be given, the manner of receiving inputs (feedback as comments, co-drafting etc), frequency and mode of meetings to iterate on drafts, sign off on drafts for final comments, reviews and approval for inclusion in the action plan or other decision-making processes.
  • Agree which tool will be used for drafting: Ensure all collaborators are able to use and access these tools easily and are familiarised with features to be used.
  • Additional peer reviewers or collaborators: Beyond the initial group of collaborators, determine who should be consulted for further validating the drafts or providing feedback.
  • Coherence and consistency: Assign responsibility for creating a coherent commitment based on all inputs received.

Online tools for collaborative drafting

The tools below allow for multiple collaborators with simultaneous drafting, with some differences in functionalities on whether the tools are open source, allow revision history and editing authority of collaborators

  • For those with a Google account: Google Docs
  • Open source alternatives: Etherpad or JoeDocs
  • For drafting with larger groups: Discuto
  • The low tech option of taking turns and sharing documents for in-person writing or editing where working on shared documents online might not be possible for a variety of reasons. This needs clear rules for version control, mode of editing, labelling and sharing files.

For a more detailed list of online tools and platforms that may be used for collaborative drafting, please CLICK HERE

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