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Scotland, United Kingdom

Public Service Accountability (SCO0009)

Overview

At-a-Glance

Action Plan: Scotland Action Plan 2018-2020

Action Plan Cycle: 2018

Status: Active

Institutions

Lead Institution: DG Economy, Scottish Government will work collaboratively with scrutiny bodies, regulators, Citizens Advice Scotland and other civil society organisations

Support Institution(s): Other Actors Involved State actors involved For Part 1 • Audit Scotland • Cosla • Scottish Care Commission • Scottish Government • Scottish Information Commissioner • Scottish Public Services Ombudsman • [Others, including for Part 2, to be added as we engage further] CSOs, private sector, multilaterals, working groups For Part 1 • Citizens Advice Service Network • Scottish OGP network • [Others, including for Part 2, to be added as we engage further]

Policy Areas

Legislation & Regulation, Public Participation, Public Service Delivery, Subnational

IRM Review

IRM Report: Pending IRM Review

Starred: Pending IRM Review

Early Results: Pending IRM Review

Design i

Verifiable: Pending IRM Review

Relevant to OGP Values: Not Relevant

Potential Impact: Pending IRM Review

Implementation i

Completion: Pending IRM Review

Description

Commitment 4: Improving the accountability of public services – the citizen’s journey
October 2018 - 2020 Lead implementing agency/actor DG Economy, Scottish Government will work collaboratively with scrutiny bodies, regulators, Citizens Advice Scotland and other civil society organisations Commitment description What is the public problem that the commitment will address? How public services are held to account in Scotland is complex. It can be challenging for people to know how to navigate this landscape whether to share their views, resolve a problem or hold public services to account at an individual, organisational, sectoral or national level. From the public consultation, we heard that people wanted to know: • how to make their voices heard; • how they can have a say in, and contribute to, public sector improvement and accountability; and • who makes decisions about public service design and delivery, how and under what authority. A lack of understanding and certainty around how public services are held to account can make individuals feel powerless, frustrated or disengaged.
What is the commitment? This commitment is split into two distinct parts: Part 1 is led by a collaboration of scrutiny bodies and regulators. Part 2 is led by the Scottish Government. Part 1 – Understanding accountability and improving citizens’ access We commit to work collaboratively within the current regulatory framework to improve the citizen’s understanding of and access to accountability mechanisms. This means improving people’s understanding of accountability and how Scottish public services are held to account; and how they can exercise their right to seek scrutiny of public services. We will work together to examine what accountability means to different groups of people. This will include mapping the current landscape of public service scrutiny and regulatory bodies, identifying what sort of decisions they take, what and how they scrutinise and regulate, how they drive improvement and how citizens can access this. Our approach will include the milestones under Part 1 below. Part 2 – A citizen-focused approach to public services Accountability isn’t just about reacting when things go wrong. It must be embedded throughout public service design – starting with policy and decision makers hearing people’s views and experiences, learning from past experience when designing new services, and tackling the issues that matter to people in a way that works for them. The Scottish Government is committed to working collaboratively to put these principles into practice by progressing a transformational approach that puts people at the heart of policy making. The Scottish Government will continue its work with a range of partners (taking account of the work of Part 1 of this commitment) to deliver the following milestones under Part 2 below. Consumer Scotland will establish an investigatory body to tackle issues where there is a high level of consumer detriment. It will provide an important vehicle to build trust and transparency in government by ensuring that those responsible for poor decisions and practices are held to account.
How will the commitment contribute to solving the public problem? The commitment will improve the citizen’s journey around public services accountability. It will empower and enable citizens’ participation and ability to hold public services to account. We envisage this commitment will deliver the following outcomes: • amplify the work of scrutiny bodies and regulators to hold public services to account and make it more visible to people • people know how they can hold public services to account and are supported to do this • scrutiny bodies, regulators, civil society and government work effectively together and share good practice Why is this commitment relevant to OGP values? In delivering this commitment we will: • enable greater transparency by increasing the accessibility, usability and quality of information on public service accountability for people • enhance and strengthen the citizen voice and citizens’ ability to inform public services by helping people navigate the scrutiny and regulatory landscape • promote people-focused scrutiny mechanisms that strengthen citizens’ ability to challenge how public services are delivered, including through complaints and appeals processes Additional information This work will aid the delivery of the: • Openness commitment within the National Performance Framework • Community Empowerment • The Duty of User Focus in Public Services Reform (Scotland) Act 2010 • Potential new Consumer Duty as consulted upon in the Consumer Scotland consultation in July 2018
Milestone Activity with a verifiable deliverable Start Date: End Date: Part 1 - Understanding accountability and improving citizens’ access • analysing relevant data to identify what public services people seek advice on and the root causes of their concerns; • working with regulators and scrutiny bodies to identify and share information about their remits, links and perceived challenges; • holding conversations between citizens, regulators, scrutiny bodies and government to identify how citizens would like to exercise their rights to complain, appeal or seek scrutiny of public bodies, and what the barriers are; • working with regulators and scrutiny bodies to understand how to share learning and good practice on ensuring citizens are able to help shape their services going forward; and • identifying ways to improve access to and strengthen citizens’ ability to hold public services to account within the current landscape, to amplify the impact of the scrutiny bodies and their distinct duties. Spring 2019 2020
Contact information Name of responsible person from implementing agency Doreen Grove Title, Department Doreen Grove, Head of Open Government, Ingage, Scottish Government This commitment is owned and led by the following actors: DG Economy, Scottish Government will work collaboratively with scrutiny bodies, regulators, Citizens Advice Scotland and other civil society organisations Email and Phone Doreen.grove@gov.scot 07767343230
Lead: Lorraine King lorraine.king@gov.scot Karen Dickson karen.dickson@gov.scot Other Actors Involved State actors involved For Part 1 • Audit Scotland • Cosla • Scottish Care Commission • Scottish Government • Scottish Information Commissioner • Scottish Public Services Ombudsman • [Others, including for Part 2, to be added as we engage further] CSOs, private sector, multilaterals, working groups For Part 1 • Citizens Advice Service Network • Scottish OGP network • [Others, including for Part 2, to be added as we engage further]


Scotland, United Kingdom's Commitments

  1. Financial and Performance Transparency

    SCO0006, 2018, Fiscal Transparency

  2. Open Policy Making and Participation in Service Delivery

    SCO0007, 2018, Capacity Building

  3. Improve Data Use

    SCO0008, 2018, Capacity Building

  4. Public Service Accountability

    SCO0009, 2018, Legislation & Regulation

  5. Transparency and Participation

    SCO0010, 2018, Citizenship and Immigration

  6. Financial Transparency

    SCO0001, 2017, E-Government

  7. Measuring Scotland’S Progress

    SCO0002, 2017, Capacity Building

  8. Deliver a Fairer Scotland

    SCO0003, 2017, Marginalized Communities

  9. Participatory Budgeting (Also Known as Community Choices in Scotland)

    SCO0004, 2017, Capacity Building

  10. Increasing Participation

    SCO0005, 2017, Capacity Building