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IRM Refresh

In 2018, the Independent Reporting Mechanism (IRM) published a Review Report of its work and impact. The report was based on interviews with more than 50 OGP stakeholders and a survey of more than 100 civil society and government actors familiar with the IRM. The IRM refresh process is aimed to address the findings in the IRM Review Report.

In 2019, during the second phase of the refresh, the IRM conducted various consultations and outreach efforts to gather feedback for changes in the IRM, including blog posts, social media, group discussions and workshops with IRM researchers, government points of contact, and civil society groups. The IRM also provided an opportunity for the OGP community to give feedback through an online survey and carried out a series of webinars in early 2020 to discuss what was heard during the IRM Refresh consultation process.

The feedback we received from different stakeholders can be broken down in three categories:

The Purpose of the IRM
The feedback reinforced the IRM’s purpose as an independent and credible voice that builds credibility for the Partnership. Most survey respondents agreed that the IRM is key to support OGP members improve their open government efforts. The IRM has a clear role as an independent reporting mechanism in compliance with OGP rules, contributing to accountability but not directly enforcing it. The feedback from stakeholders also validated the IRM’s role in enabling learning across country level stakeholders.
Scope of Reporting
Stakeholders helped the IRM identify key moments in the action plan cycle that need IRM input and where IRM’s role adds value. The moments identified were (1) before co-creation to provide lessons and recommendations on the co-creation process and action plan design; (2) Upon submission of the action plan to provide a technical, objective and independent review of the quality of commitments, process and action plan overall; (3) At the end of the action plan to provide an assessment focused on results. Stakeholder feedback also suggested a need for ongoing monitoring of completion during implementation so that the analysis is focused on outcomes, challenges, and recommendations.
Informing Stakeholders
IRM user feedback suggested that the IRM research process should be conducted with more openness. This also included a call for IRM to provide more opportunities for stakeholders to inform and validate evidence at an earlier stage in the review process, instead of the current formal pre-publication review period. Feedback also recommended a simplification of IRM procedures, guidance and report templates, as well as more outreach efforts to disseminate findings.

The Steering Committee endorsed the IRM Refresh during the February 2020 in-person meeting. You can read the endorsed strategy here.

If you have any questions related to the IRM refresh process please send an email to

Open Government Partnership