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Ireland

Review National and International Practice to Develop Revised Principles / Code for Public Engagement/Consultation with Citizens, Civil Society and Others by Public Bodies. (IE0009)

Overview

At-a-Glance

Action Plan: Ireland, First Action Plan, 2014-16

Action Plan Cycle: 2014

Status: Inactive

Institutions

Lead Institution: Department of Public Expenditure and Reform

Support Institution(s): All public bodies involved in the delivery of the commitments

Policy Areas

Public Participation

IRM Review

IRM Report: Ireland End-of-Term Report 2014-2016

Starred: No

Early Results: Did Not Change

Design i

Verifiable: Yes

Relevant to OGP Values: Access to Information Civic Participation , Public Accountability , Technology

Potential Impact:

Implementation i

Completion:

Description

This action allows for a thorough review of the guidelines and principles for consultation and engagement with the public in relation to policy development and decision making. It is intended that proposals would be developed to foster greater citizen involvement and participation. In seeking to develop updated and improved regulations, principles and procedures on public consultation, best international practice as set out by the OECD and the Council of Europe would be taken into account. Areas for examination could include knowledge sharing on best practice, how engagement can be facilitated through the use of technology including, but not limited to, Open Data and social media, and measures for the monitoring and conduct of public consultation.

IRM End of Term Status Summary

2.1: Revise Government Principles on Consultation Processes

Commitment Text:

Action 2.1-  Review national and international practice to develop revised principles/ code for public engagement/consultation with citizens, civil society and others by public bodies.

This action allows for a thorough review of the guidelines and principles for consultation and engagement with the public in relation to policy development and decision making. It is intended that proposals would be developed to foster greater citizen involvement and participation. In seeking to develop updated and improved regulations, principles and procedures on public consultation, best international practice as set out by the OECD and the Council of Europe would be taken into account. Areas for examination could include knowledge sharing on best practice, how engagement can be facilitated through the use of technology including, but not limited to, Open Data and social media, and measures for the monitoring and conduct of public consultation.

Responsible institution: Department of Public Expenditure and Reform (DPER)

Supporting institution(s): All public bodies involved in the delivery of the committments

Start date: 1 August 2014                                                                  End date: 30 December 2015

 

Commitment Aim

This commitment seeks to review both national and international citizen participation practices to improve the procedures for consultations with stakeholders and citizens when public policy is made. The expectation was that clearer guidelines for consultation would help improve the ability for citizens to add input in public policy, thereby increasing participation and transparency in government. The principles and procedures for consultation were expected to serve as a guideline and to inform engagement by government departments and all public bodies to allow for greater citizen influence in areas where policy is made.

Status

Midterm: Substantial

After the action plan was adopted, Action 2.1 set the basis for a complete review of guidelines and principles for consultation processes. The review also made suggestions on how to better engage with citizens during said process by constructing a central repository for all public consultations, which will automatically notify citizens about consultations in areas where they have a registered interest. The “Draft Consultation Principles/Guidance for Public Consultations” was subsequently published in year one of action plan in July 2015.[Note 22: On the Draft Document, see bit.ly/1RZQxGe (link to Guidelines, top of page). ]

End of term: Complete

As reported by the government in its end of term self assessment report, in year two of the action plan a public consultation process of the draft guidance document was held in October 2015. The public consultation was open to all and received several submissions over a period of 10 weeks. The government, in turn, considered these submissions in finalizing the document. The government approved the updated consultation document in September 2016 and published it in November 2016 (full details can be found in this footnote).[Note 23: See: http://www.per.gov.ie/wp-content/uploads/Consultation-Principles-Guidance.pdf ] Examples of principles established to ministries include targeted consultation with those with a clear interest in the policy, and ensuring that consultation takes place with all stakeholders in the different stages of the policy-making process from formulation to implementation. The delay from the original expected completion date originated in the forming of a new government after the general elections earlier in the year. The action can therefore be deemed completed.

Did it open government?

Access to information: Did not change

Civic participation: Did not change

Public participation: Did not change

This action addressed the need to develop guidlelines on public consultation, absent from extant regulations. The action’s potential impact was expected to be moderate. Even though the guidelines developed may serve as a foundation for all departments and public bodies to better implement a consultation strategy when public policy is made in their respective policy area, it remains limited in scope because each must still independently roll out all the guidelines. In other words, each ministry/body can do what they want, given the absence of a strong, centralized policy requiring them to pursue consultation within a specified time period. As the guidelines have yet to be adopted given delays in forming government (see above section), at this stage the status quo remains.

Carried forward?

This commitment was not carried forward into the next action plan. 


Ireland's Commitments

  1. Promote Transparent Climate Policy Development

    IE0031, 2016, Environment and Climate

  2. Support Public Participation Networks

    IE0032, 2016, Capacity Building

  3. Improve Access to Justice: Reducing Costs

    IE0033, 2016, Judiciary

  4. Improve Access to Justice: Framework to Assist Vulnerable Persons

    IE0034, 2016, Judiciary

  5. Improve Access to Justice: Oversight of Legal Practitioners

    IE0035, 2016, Justice

  6. Enhance Citizen Engagement in Policy Making: General

    IE0036, 2016, Capacity Building

  7. Enhance Citizen Engagement in Policy Making: Youth

    IE0037, 2016, Marginalized Communities

  8. Enhance Customer Engagement

    IE0038, 2016, Capacity Building

  9. Improve Access to Government Services Through Technology

    IE0039, 2016, Capacity Building

  10. Participatory Budgeting

    IE0040, 2016, Participation in Budget Processes

  11. Improve Transparency of Government Service Providers

    IE0041, 2016, Fiscal Transparency

  12. Enhance Fiscal Transparency

    IE0042, 2016, Fiscal Transparency

  13. Introduce Modern Document Management Procedures

    IE0043, 2016, Legislation & Regulation

  14. Develop an Open Data Strategy 2017-2020

    IE0044, 2016, E-Government

  15. Invest in Data Infrastructure That Will Result in Better Open Data

    IE0045, 2016, Legislation & Regulation

  16. Starred commitment Develop a Code of Practice for the Governance of Charities

    IE0046, 2016,

  17. Starred commitment Public Sector Standards Bill

    IE0047, 2016, Anti-Corruption Institutions

  18. Establish a Register of Beneficial Ownership

    IE0048, 2016, Asset Disclosure

  19. Establishment of Best Practice Standards for Open Data

    IE0001, 2014, Capacity Building

  20. Establishment of Ireland’S Open Data Platform

    IE0002, 2014, E-Government

  21. Undertake an Audit of Key Datasets for Publication

    IE0003, 2014, Open Data

  22. Establish a Roadmap for the Open Data and an Evaluation Framework to Provide Assessment of the Ongoing Open Data

    IE0004, 2014, Open Data

  23. Establishment of an Open Data Ireland Governance Board (ODIGB) and Steering and Implementation Group (SIG) for Open Data Ireland

    IE0005, 2014, Open Data

  24. Signing up to the G8 Open Data Charter

    IE0006, 2014, Open Data

  25. Implementing Open Data

    IE0007, 2014, Open Data

  26. Improve Computer Literacy Through Implementation of Proposed New Digital Strategy for Schools

    IE0008, 2014, Capacity Building

  27. Review National and International Practice to Develop Revised Principles / Code for Public Engagement/Consultation with Citizens, Civil Society and Others by Public Bodies.

    IE0009, 2014, Public Participation

  28. Starred commitment Hold Referenda Arising from the Recommendations of the Constitutional Convention

    IE0010, 2014, Gender

  29. Starred commitment Ethics Reform

    IE0011, 2014, Conflicts of Interest

  30. Strengthening Freedom of Information - Implement the Code of Practice for Freedom of Information (FOI).

    IE0012, 2014, Legislation & Regulation

  31. Reform of FOI

    IE0013, 2014, Capacity Building

  32. Starred commitment Regulation of Lobbying

    IE0014, 2014, Legislation & Regulation

  33. Starred commitment Encourage, Protect and Raise Awareness of Whistleblower Duties and Protections

    IE0015, 2014, Whistleblower Protections

  34. Measures to Increase Citizen Participation in Decision Making on Policy and Legislative Proposals. Systemic Pre-Legislative Scrutiny of Draft Bills

    IE0016, 2014, Legislation & Regulation

  35. Develop and Deliver Access to Environmental Information (AIE) Training Module for Public Officials

    IE0017, 2014, Capacity Building

  36. Increase Citizen Participation at Local Level. Pilot Approach to Implementation of Public Participation Networks

    IE0018, 2014, Private Sector

  37. Provide Legal Base for Public Participation Framework in Local Government

    IE0019, 2014, Capacity Building

  38. Undertake a Feasibility Study on Possible Means of Enabling Further Citizen Engagement in Local Authority Budgetary Processes

    IE0020, 2014, Participation in Budget Processes

  39. Support Children and Young People as Citizens. Develop, Finalise and Publish the First Government Strategy on Children and Young People's Participation in Decision-Making.

    IE0021, 2014, Capacity Building

  40. Maximise Participation and Understanding of Young People in Civic Life

    IE0022, 2014, Capacity Building

  41. Development of an ICT Strategy

    IE0023, 2014, Public Service Delivery

  42. Data Sharing and Governance Bill

    IE0024, 2014, E-Government

  43. Public Services Card

    IE0025, 2014, E-Government

  44. Single Customer View

    IE0026, 2014, E-Government

  45. Local Government Portal

    IE0027, 2014, E-Government

  46. New Local Enterprise Offices

    IE0028, 2014, Public Service Delivery

  47. Review and Enhancement of Complaints Procedures and Using Feedback to Improve Services Across the Public Service; a Review of Citizen Complaints Procedures Will Be Undertaken.

    IE0029, 2014, Public Participation

  48. Enhance Customer Engagement

    IE0030, 2014, Public Participation