Thank you for your contributions to the UK Government and Open Government Network’s consultation on the UK’s next National Action Plan for Open Government.
The consultation saw 24 individuals representing over 20 organisations comment on the open google doc (links) and 6 further responses via email from both individuals and organisations. The Open Government Network also contributed a response representing what we have heard from members of our network.
Your contribution to this consultation is really important to the process of developing the UK national action plan for open government. It builds upon the crowdsourcing and co-creation process so far undertaken by Government and the Open Government Network, and will help further improve the proposed commitments. Developing, securing and implementing lasting open government reform is only possible with ongoing collaboration between citizens, civil society, political and official champions and other stakeholders.
DCMS is now analysing all the comments and feedback received to ensure it is taken into account as the national action plan is developed further towards a final version.
Later in October, Minister Margot James will chair the third open government multistakeholder forum (MSF) between Government and the Open Government Network, to discuss the development of the national action plan towards this final version. Government, the Open Government Network and civil society leads will continue to develop the action plan commitments after the MSF.
A final version of the national action plan is then due to be published on the OGN website and gov.uk by the end of this year.
For more information
If you have any questions or would like to contribute to the MSF or specific commitments, please contact the OGN coordinator: email@example.com
The Coordinator of the Open Government Civil Society Network
Since its almost the end of the year, I wondered where things have got to with government publishing the fourth NAP. Should we expect a delay given the current political climate, or this a good time to push HMG to make some commitments maybe? Especially since the recent update on the anti-corruption strategy, which included some relevant issues.
Interested in your thoughts.
Hi Rachel, and all the OGN,
So I had been hoping that this week I could give some good news on the development of the action plan further on from my Update on the 4th UK NAP a couple of weeks ago.
Thanks for the prompt, but it is unfortunately not good news.
Last week, I had a chat with DCMS to talk through the situation regarding the National Action Plan and work out the next steps to keep it moving. Out of that conversation it seemed the best course of action was to submit the final Action Plan to the OGP before the end of the year, and then do a public launch in January (‘a la Scotland’ as i’m calling it). Following that, DCMS was keen to continue working to add commitments to the plan in the lead up to the Ottowa Summit in May 2019 (possibly on a gender-related issue as is the topic of that summit).
However, after that chat came the omnishambles on the non-vote in Parliament and the Conservative leadership non-election. Therefore, the sign off from ministers got delayed, and because of that it is now impossible to get the plan completed and submitted to the OGP before the end of December. In fact, one commitment (open policy making) is still awaiting sign off although it is on their desk. DCMS are discussing with the OGP what that will mean for the UK (probably moving into the next cycle of country action plans) and still planning to get it done and published in January.
As you can imagine, this is wholly disappointing (albeit probably not surprising) from UK Government. I feel that we as the OGN need to make sure we are vocal in our disappointment/frustration etc of all this.
This is my planned course of action which I hope people will support:
- Continue with the action plan publication in January (Produce civil society foreword - see draft here)
- Publish public statement by OGN about the fact the action plan has not been delivered in deadline - to do in January
- Work on development of commitments to adopt before Ottowa OGP Summit in May 2019.
- Continue to push developing commitments on Open Justice, as per letter from Ministers on the issue.
I am keen to hear people’s thoughts on this development. It is not ideal to get this news at this time of year, and sorry it could not be more positive!
Thanks, Andreas. I agree with those four action points.
Speak to you tomorrow.
Rachel Davies Teka
Head of Advocacy
Thanks for the update Andreas, which I’m not wholly surprised by. I think it tells us where the government is at the moment on its overall approach to openness and the level of political traction we can expect to get.
I agree with your suggested plan of action. What I’m particularly keen to avoid is a last minute scramble before Ottawa where we agree to some new targets but some of the meatier (i.e. harder) ones get dropped or moved down the list just because government wants to announce something new. Finalising the 3rd NAP was rather rushed - we should remind HMG that we hope it won’t be the same this time round!
Happy New Year!
Thanks for your feedback on the action points. I am also keen for us to start working sooner rather than later on developing commitments/targets for Ottowa and not leaving it to the last minute.
I have added on the civil society foreword to this action plan a short statement about our disappointment for the delay in getting it launched. People’s comments or reflections on that are more than welcome: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1yykD_gpLziBZXSI4TNjShvQ1_FR8Zb4JYTO6uV2ZbeY/edit?usp=sharing
If there are no objections it will go into the action plan 2018-20.
I will also planning to talk with OGP Support Unit as well to see what they think and expect and hopefully find ways of using that to push along the UK Government too.