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Democracy, a Precious Asset We Must Protect

La Democracia, un bien preciado que todas las personas debemos proteger

Ninoschka Dante|

Uruguay’s Fourth Open Government Action Plan

Strengthening democracy requires ongoing work and the willingness to take up new challenges and to recognize the value of collective knowledge. Efforts made by the State to promote transparency, participation, justice, and the protection of human rights are never enough.

In Uruguay, the Open Government Action Plan co-creation process is an instrument for government agencies to strengthen democracy and create new spaces for collaboration with a constructivist approach. The process was conducted together with civil society representatives and through the open government working group for a total of 217 individuals – 141 women and 76 men – across four stages.

The following are some of the unique elements we included in our fourth action plan:

  • We included a tool to enable e-participation in an effort to go beyond on-site participation spaces such as dialogue forums and create a virtual space to manage proposals and, in doing so, strengthen transparency. We adapted the tool Consul, developed by the City of Madrid, to help us manage citizen proposals and implement a public consultation.
  • We conducted co-creation workshops focused on specific issues, such as gender violence and electoral processes. Representatives from participating government agencies, civil society and the media participated in these workshops. The aim was to connect the different stakeholders, even their knowledge out and exchange points of view about citizen demands and potential solutions to those.
  • We gave priority to commitments that implement open government processes by default, that enable citizen participation in the design and implementation of public policies and that create spaces for collaboration.
  • We introduced a co-creation space, a day where all the stakeholders of the new action plan agreed on a final version of the commitment sheets prior to the public consultation.
  • We integrated a gender perspective into the plan design and into the monitoring process.

Uruguay’s fourth Open Government Action Plan 2018-2020 includes 39 commitments – grouped in 11 themes – for 28 government agencies. We shared some examples of commitments related to the themes “gender and generations”, “equality, development and citizenry”, and “participative societies”.

  1. Gender-based violence observatory. Design and implement the gender-based observatory. Standardize indicators and administrative records, create common metrics across relevant institutions, consolidate criteria, and categorize, measure and publish data on femicides.
  2. Security and gender violence: access to open data. Facilitate access to open data on gender-based issues to allow for information systematization, which is in high demand by civil society, academia and the media.
  3. Gender and rural youth perspective. This commitment aims to include a gender perspective and rural youth through a participatory process for developing: a) an agenda for women and rural youth that includes their needs, proposals, and priorities; b) a governance space for monitoring where rural women and rural youth can influence government decisions and follow up on the progress made toward meeting their priorities; and c) an online transparency platform for data publication and accountability.
  4. National Dance Plan. The National Dance Plan 2020-2030 will be developed in a participatory manner in pursuit of sustainability, development and visibility of dance as an artistic practice and cultural right. The process will apply and adapt the Open Government Partnership co-creation standards. The plan will be developed with input from dance stakeholders and will include programs, teams, timelines and budgets according to different axes (territory, disciplines, value chain) and perspectives (gender, inclusion, education and professionalization).

You can find all of our commitments in the Open Government Observatory, an online tool that helps us bring transparency and be accountable about the progress we make on all our initiatives.

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