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Netherlands

Open Parliament (NL0035)

Overview

At-a-Glance

Action Plan: Netherlands Action Plan 2018-2020

Action Plan Cycle: 2018

Status: Active

Institutions

Lead Institution: House of Representatives of the States General

Support Institution(s): Leer- en Expertisepunt Open Overheid (Open Government Learning and Expertise Centre - LEOO)

Policy Areas

Anti-Corruption, Audits and Controls, E-Government, Legislative, Legislature

IRM Review

IRM Report: Netherlands Design Report 2018-2020

Starred: Pending IRM Review

Early Results: Pending IRM Review

Design i

Verifiable: Yes

Relevant to OGP Values: Access to Information

Potential Impact:

Implementation i

Completion: Pending IRM Review

Description

Open Parliament
Start and end dates of the action point: 1 July 2018 - 30 June 2020
Main action owner (organisation) House of Representatives of the States General
Description of the action point
Which social issue does the action point seek to address? • Not all websites are accessible to, or can be used by, people with a functional or cognitive impairment.
• In a democracy, it is important that everyone can easily access Parliamentary information.
• The corporate site of the Dutch House of Representatives, tweedekamer.nl, contains many parliamentary documents that are difficult to access by people with a functional or cognitive impairment.
What is the action point? • To improve the accessibility and usability of parliamentary documents on the website of the House of Representatives, including access to parliamentary documents, by applying the European guidelines for digital accessibility, the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), to parliamentary documents.
• This improvement is not only intended for the target group of people with a functional or cognitive impairment, but for all users.
How will the action point contribute to remedying the social issue? • 'Removing the threshold' will make parliamentary documents more easily accessible and easier to use for everyone.
• The House of Representatives would like to lead by example and would like to share the knowledge that is gained through this process with other authorities.
Why is this action point relevant to OGP values? • The action point will contribute to the OGP values of transparency and civic participation:
o The action point will contribute to improving the quality and the accessibility of the information on the website of the House of Representatives and thus increase the transparency of the parliamentary process.
o The action point will contribute to strengthening opportunities for civic participation by making parliamentary documents more easily accessible to people with a functional impairment and others.
Additional information

Milestone with a verifiable result (please note: SMART) Start date: End date:
Completion of an advisory report (analysis phase) on “no-threshold” publications on the website of the House of Representatives. 01/06/2018 01/10/2018
Project plan, incl. assigned budget, established 01/10/2018 31/12/2018
Implementation of the project plan 01/01/2019 30/06/2020
Conducting an audit 01/07/2020 23/09/2020
Sharing knowledge and experiences gained while applying the European guidelines for digital accessibility 23/09/2020
Contact information
Name of the responsible person representing the main action owner Jos de Groot
Position, organisational unit Directie Bedrijfsvoering en Informatisering (Business Operations and Computerisation Department)
Email and phone number j.dgroot@tweedekamer.nl, +31(0)6-14796822
Other actors involved Authorities involved

Other organisations or bodies (such as community organisations or the private sector) Leer- en Expertisepunt Open Overheid (Open Government Learning and Expertise Centre - LEOO)

IRM Midterm Status Summary

4. Open Parliament

Language of the commitment as it appears in the action plan:

  1. To improve the accessibility and usability of parliamentary documents on the website of the House of Representatives, including access to parliamentary documents, by applying the European guidelines for digital accessibility, the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), to parliamentary documents.
  2. This improvement is not only intended for the target group of people with a functional or cognitive impairment, but for all users. [16]

Milestones

4.1. Completion of an advisory report (analysis phase) on “no-threshold” publications on the website of the House of Representatives.

4.2. Project plan, incl. assigned budget, established.

4.3. Implementation of the project plan.

4.4. Conducting an audit.

4.5. Sharing knowledge and experiences gained while applying the European guidelines for digital accessibility.

Start Date: July 2018   

End Date: June 2020

Context and Objectives

Assuring access to government websites, irrespective of possible disabilities or physical impairments, is an important part of making sure that open government works for everyone in society and every person can access important documents needed to take part in the democratic process. As such, the EU (as part of its obligations related to the Digital Single Market) requires member states to adopt legislation that requires websites of public sector bodies to meet the so-called Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 (level AA) standard. New websites must comply from 23 September 2019 onwards, and old websites from 23 September 2020 onwards.

In light of this directive, the Dutch parliament has committed to ensure its current website meets the WCAG standard. In that sense, the commitment is relevant to the OGP value of access to information. The planned activities and milestones are specific enough to be verified. They include the establishment of a needs assessment (4.1) and subsequent project plan (4.2, 4.3) including an evaluation after implementation of the project (4.4) and sharing best practices (4.5). The commitment does not mention the place within the broader open access portal of parliament, [17] to what documents it pertains (pdfs and videos are currently exempt), nor what the retention will be and what limitations there are to full retention (until what date/time one is able to retrieve documents in the mentioned standard). It is therefore unclear what the exact baseline and possible problems were at the start of the project. It is therefore difficult to assess the potential impact beyond minor.

Next steps

The IRM researcher recommends embedding such commitments in future action plans within the broader work on openness and accessibility of the Dutch parliament website. Commitments that would imply setting new standards, higher than the legal minimum required, on accessibility could be ground-breaking. In particular, efforts to enrich the current API on opendata.tweedekamer.nl with audio-visual content could be considered, given its current absence from the database. The general user-friendliness could be improved in consultation with end-users such as journalists, CSOs, national statistics office, etc.

[16] The complete text of this commitment, https://www.opengovpartnership.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/Netherlands_Action-Plan_2018-2020_EN.pdf

[17] https://opendata.tweedekamer.nl/


Commitments

  1. Local Digital Democracy

    NL0028, 2018, E-Government

  2. Dilemma Logic

    NL0029, 2018, Capacity Building

  3. Join EITI

    NL0030, 2018, Access to Information

  4. Open Algorithms

    NL0031, 2018, Automated Decision-Making

  5. Open Local Decision-Making

    NL0032, 2018, Access to Information

  6. ‘Open by Design’ Pilots

    NL0033, 2018, Access to Information

  7. Open Contracting

    NL0034, 2018, Access to Information

  8. Open Parliament

    NL0035, 2018, Anti-Corruption

  9. Open Government Standard and Dashboard

    NL0036, 2018, Access to Information

  10. Pioneering Network for an Open Government for Municipalities

    NL0037, 2018, Capacity Building

  11. Transparent Political Party Finance

    NL0038, 2018, Legislation & Regulation

  12. National Open Data Agenda

    NL0019, 2016, Access to Information

  13. Stuiveling Open Data Award

    NL0020, 2016, Access to Information

  14. Groningen Open Data Re-Use

    NL0021, 2016, Access to Information

  15. Releasing Ministerial Research Reports

    NL0022, 2016, Access to Information

  16. Detailed Open Spending Data

    NL0023, 2016, Access to Information

  17. Open Local Authority Decision-Making

    NL0024, 2016, Access to Information

  18. Training Civil Servants on Public Participation

    NL0025, 2016, Capacity Building

  19. Easier Freedom of Information Requests

    NL0026, 2016, Access to Information

  20. Open Government Expertise Centre (LEOO)

    NL0027, 2016, Access to Information

  21. Further Develop and Promote Disclosure and Use of Open Data

    NL0001, 2013, Access to Information

  22. Increase Financial Transparency Through Open Budget and Experiments with Open Spending and Budget Monitoring

    NL0002, 2013, Access to Information

  23. Open House of Representatives

    NL0003, 2013, E-Government

  24. Instruments for Integrity

    NL0004, 2013, Anti-Corruption

  25. Revamp the Legislative Calendar

    NL0005, 2013, Access to Information

  26. More Online Consultation

    NL0006, 2013, E-Government

  27. More Transparency in Decision-Making Through Volgdewet.Nl Legislation-Tracking Website

    NL0007, 2013, Access to Information

  28. Informal Approach to Freedom of Information Requests

    NL0008, 2013, Access to Information

  29. From Rules to Freedom

    NL0009, 2013, Public Participation

  30. Change Attitudes and Procedures Through Smarter Working and ‘Public Servant 2.0’

    NL0010, 2013, Capacity Building

  31. Water Coalition

    NL0011, 2013, Public Participation

  32. Develop and Implement Participation Policy at the Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment

    NL0012, 2013, Public Participation

  33. Make Government Information Accessible and Easy to Find

    NL0013, 2013, Capacity Building

  34. Make Citizens Better Informed and More Empowered: Public Inspection and Correction of Information

    NL0014, 2013, E-Government

  35. Open Announcements and Notifications

    NL0015, 2013, E-Government

  36. Public Services and the User Perspective

    NL0016, 2013, E-Government

  37. Designate Categories of Government Information for Active Access

    NL0017, 2013, Access to Information

  38. Rethink Information Management and Active Access: Four ‘Open by Design’ Pilot Projects

    NL0018, 2013, Access to Information

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