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Republic of Korea

Safety Inspection System (KR0039)

Overview

At-a-Glance

Action Plan: Republic of Korea Action Plan 2018-2020

Action Plan Cycle: 2018

Status: Active

Institutions

Lead Institution: Customer Support Office, Ministry of Food and Drug Safety

Support Institution(s): NA

Policy Areas

E-petitions, Health, Public Participation, Public Service Delivery

IRM Review

IRM Report: Republic of Korea Design Report 2018-2020

Starred: Pending IRM Review

Early Results: Pending IRM Review

Design i

Verifiable: Yes

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

Potential Impact:

Implementation i

Completion: Pending IRM Review

Description

Adoption of a Safety Inspection System Powered by the Public Petition
Commitment Start and End Date
September 1, 2018 ~ August 31, 2020
Lead Implementing Agency/Actor
Customer Support Office, Ministry of Food and Drug Safety
Commitment Description
What is the public problem that the commitment will address?
Recently an array of scandals surrounding frequently-used consumer goods has garnered attention from the public: pesticide-tainted eggs and toxic sanitary pads with volatile chemical compounds. In general, relevant government bodies collect and inspect the items that have become a social issue such as items with harmful substance domestically or internationally disclosed or pointed out by the National Assembly or the press. Therefore, the public has limited access to make requests for inspection. In addition, the outcome of the inspection is only partially disclosed which in turn hinders the public from participating in response measures.
What is the commitment?
The purpose of this commitment is to address the public’s concern over the food and drug safety through conducting an inspection on certain food or drug items upon the public’s request via petition and sharing the outcome of the inspection transparently. The public’s trust on the government in relation to health and safety will be boosted through directly listening to the public’s voice and carrying out policies accordingly.
How will the commitment contribute to solve the public problem?
The detailed implementation methods are as follows: 1) to build and operate a publicpetition safety inspection website, petition.mfds.go.kr; 2) to create and operate the committee for the public petition safety inspection to select subjects of safety inspections petitioned by a majority of the public and discuss the validity of inspection outcomes; 3) to inspect items with a high number of petitions in the initial stage and ultimately determine the threshold number of petitions based on the analysis of cases.
Why is this commitment relevant to OGP values?
Enhancing government-to-public communication and transparency
Exchange and Peer Learning
Sharing cases and relevant information at the international level
Additional Information
The budget for collecting and inspecting subjects of safety inspection needs to be secured
Milestone Activity with a Verifiable Deliverable
Creating selection standard
Selecting subjects of safety inspections every quarter
Contact Information
Name of Responsible Person from Implementing Agency
Seonjeong Seo
Title, Division
Administrative Officer, Customer Support Office
Email and Phone
seo4359@korea.kr, +82-43-719-1052
Other Actors Involved
N/A

IRM Midterm Status Summary

4. Adoption of a Safety Inspection System Powered by the Public Petition

Commitment Text:

"Adoption of a Safety Inspection System Powered by the Public Petition"

The purpose of this commitment is to address the public's concern over the food and drug safety through conducting an inspection on certain food or drug items upon the public's request via petition and sharing the outcome of the inspection transparently. The public's trust on the government in relation to health and safety will be boosted through directly listening to the public's voice and carrying out policies accordingly.

The detailed implementation methods are as follows:

1) to build and operate a public petition safety inspection website, petition.mfds.go.kr;

2) to create and operate the committee for the public petition safety inspection to select subjects of safety inspections petitioned by a majority of the public and discuss the validity of inspection outcomes;

3) to inspect items with a high number of petitions in the initial stage and ultimately determine the threshold number of petitions based on the analysis of cases.

Milestones:

  • Creating selection standard
  • Selecting subjects of safety inspections every quarter

Start Date: 1 September 2018 End Date: 31 August 2020

Editorial Note: For the full text of the commitment, please see Korea's 4th National Action Plan 2018-2020 at https://bit.ly/2JvQr98.

Commitment Overview

Verifiability

OGP Value Relevance (as written)

Potential Impact

Completion

Did It Open Government?

Not specific enough to be verifiable

Specific enough to be verifiable

Access to Information

Civic Participation

Public Accountability

Technology & Innovation for Transparency & Accountability

None

Minor

Moderate

Transformative

Not Started

Limited

Substantial

Completed

Worsened

Did Not Change

Marginal

Major

Outstanding

4. Overall

Assessed at the end of the action plan cycle.

Assessed at the end of the action plan cycle.

Context and Objectives

The purpose of this commitment is to facilitate public participation in ensuring food and drug safety. It will allow the public to petition for the inspection of items and increase access to this information. The commitment will create selection standards and a committee, who will select items for inspection from public petitions on a quarterly basis. Information from these inspections will be published online, on a dedicated website. [16]

This commitment is verifiable as it outlines measurable milestones including the creation of selection standards and quarterly selection of items for inspection. While the commitment text outlines the main implementation steps, it does not include details on the composition of the subject selection committee, nor the scope of information that will be published. However, enacted in May 2018, the regulations on the operation of the National Petition Safety Inspection Deliberation Committee specify the expected qualifications of the committee members, [17] and the guidelines for the operation of the National Petition Safety Inspection System detail what information will be disclosed as part of the inspection protocol. [18]

This commitment is relevant to the OGP value of civic participation as public petitioning creates new opportunities for citizens to inform decision-making in the area of food and drug safety. It is also relevant to access to information as the results of the safety inspections will be disclosed to the public. The commitment is also relevant to the value of technology and innovation for transparency as it will publish this information on a dedicated website. [19]

This commitment stands to have moderate potential impact on improving access to information and facilitating public participation in food and drug safety processes. According to the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety (MFDS), prior to this commitment, only the outcome of safety inspections that were found not to conform with food and drug standards were disclosed to the public. [20] The MFDS also noted that citizens found it difficult to request product inspections. [21] No information on safety inspections was disclosed to the public and the public had no opportunity to request inspections. [22] In general, the commitment stands to shift the National Petition Safety Inspection system from a largely government-led inspection process to a participatory mechanism that responds to citizen concerns.

While this commitment stands to introduce public participation and access to information on food and drug safety inspections, successful implementation depends on the subject selection committee comprising diverse stakeholders, the extent to which public petitions will be proactively selected for inspection, and the information being made accessible to the wider public. While the committee's regulations stipulate an inclusive multistakeholder composition, the commitment does not specify the number of petitions that will be considered under this commitment, nor does it outline any measures to simplify the information for general consumption. This limits an assessment of the full scope of this commitment.

Next steps

Public participation and the increased disclosure of information will strengthen public trust in food and drug safety protocols. If this commitment is carried forward into future action plans, the IRM recommends that stakeholders supplement existing multi-channel efforts to disseminate inspection results with the public, with measures to ensure that the often-technical information on food and drug safety is simplified and published in easily accessible formats.

[16] "식품안전나라" [Food Safety Korea] (2020), https://www.foodsafetykorea.go.kr/main.do.
[17] Article 3, Regulations on the Operation of the National Petition Safety Inspection Deliberation Committee (Established Rule No. 153), Ministry of Food and Drug Safety, May 2018.
[18] The IRM received and reviewed a copy of the guidelines during pre-publication review period.
[19] "식품안전나라" [Food Safety Korea] (2020), https://www.foodsafetykorea.go.kr/main.do.
[20] For more information, please see: https://petition.mfds.go.kr/guide.do (in Korean).
[21] Id.
[22] Soohyang Kim (C.O.D.E. Korea), interview by IRM researcher. 3 Jun. 2020.

Commitments

  1. Public-Private Anti-Corruption System

    KR0036, 2018, Anti-Corruption

  2. Management System for Performance Venues

    KR0037, 2018, Access to Information

  3. Real-Name Policy System

    KR0038, 2018, Access to Information

  4. Safety Inspection System

    KR0039, 2018, E-petitions

  5. Public Diplomacy System

    KR0040, 2018, Public Participation

  6. Open Communication Forum

    KR0041, 2018, E-Government

  7. Citizen Participation in Policy-Making

    KR0042, 2018, E-Government

  8. Disclosure of the Amount of Harmful Substance Contained in Foods

    KR0043, 2018, Access to Information

  9. Open Data

    KR0044, 2018, Access to Information

  10. Discosure of Cultural Heritage Resources

    KR0045, 2018, Infrastructure & Transport

  11. Open National Priority Data

    KR0046, 2018, Access to Information

  12. Public Data Qulity Management

    KR0047, 2018, Access to Information

  13. Voluntary Compliance Customs Administration

    KR0048, 2018, Capacity Building

  14. Organization Information Disclosure Online

    KR0022, 2016, Access to Information

  15. Information in Original Form

    KR0023, 2016, Access to Information

  16. Standard Model for Pre-Release Information

    KR0024, 2016, Access to Information

  17. National Data Disclosure

    KR0025, 2016, Access to Information

  18. Public Data Quality Management

    KR0026, 2016, Access to Information

  19. Free Open Format Use

    KR0027, 2016, Access to Information

  20. Open Data Standards

    KR0028, 2016, Access to Information

  21. Citizen Groups Government Service Design

    KR0029, 2016, Capacity Building

  22. e-Government Service Environment

    KR0030, 2016, E-Government

  23. Citizen Service Portals

    KR0031, 2016, Capacity Building

  24. Citizen Services Application

    KR0032, 2016, Anti-Corruption

  25. Public Sector Corruption Research

    KR0033, 2016, E-Government

  26. Citizens' Accessibility to ODA Statistics

    KR0034, 2016, Aid

  27. Disclosing Information on International Aids

    KR0035, 2016, Aid

  28. Strengthening Public-Private Collaboration

    KR0017, 2014, E-Government

  29. Providing Customized Services

    KR0018, 2014, Marginalized Communities

  30. Enhancing Information Disclosure

    KR0019, 2014, Access to Information

  31. Strengthening Public Service Ethics

    KR0020, 2014, Anti-Corruption

  32. Encouraging the Private Sector to Utilze Public Data

    KR0021, 2014, Access to Information

  33. Provision of Diverse Public Services

    KR0001, 2012, E-Government

  34. Strengthening Citizens’ Monitoring of Government

    KR0002, 2012, Fiscal Openness

  35. Use e-People to Promote Public Input in Policy Development

    KR0003, 2012, Public Participation

  36. Promote the Proposal System for Receiving Public Input Electronically

    KR0004, 2012, E-Government

  37. Develop a Manual on Consensus Building Among Various Stakeholders

    KR0005, 2012, E-Government

  38. Conduct Field Visits to Interact Directly with Stakeholders

    KR0006, 2012, E-Government

  39. Simplify Online Civil Affairs Application Forms

    KR0007, 2012, E-Government

  40. Refine the Portal to Be More User Friendly

    KR0008, 2012,

  41. Customise Online Services for Business

    KR0009, 2012, Private Sector

  42. Establish an Online Civil Affairs Hub to Provide 24-Hour Services

    KR0010, 2012, E-Government

  43. Disclose Critical Information on Food, Environment, and Education

    KR0011, 2012, E-Government

  44. Engage CSOs on Relevant Information to Be Disclosed

    KR0012, 2012, Public Participation

  45. Strengthen Asset Disclosure for Public Servants

    KR0013, 2012, Anti-Corruption

  46. Monitor Restrictions on Post-Public Employment

    KR0014, 2012, Anti-Corruption

  47. Release Public Information for Private Sector Use on the Data Sharing Portal

    KR0015, 2012, E-Government

  48. Engage Citizens in Administrative and Budget Processes

    KR0016, 2012, E-Government

Open Government Partnership