Update on the 4th UK NAP

Dear colleagues,

I recently had a call with DCMS to go over the remaining process of the UK’s 4th Open Gov NAP, as things have been quiet recently and we are getting to the end of the year.

As you well know, we are well outside the original timeframes for the NAP, but hopefully this will help set out where we are and what the next steps are.

So far:
Following the end of the public consultation a month ago, we held a multistakeholder forum on 22 Oct to go over the issues raised by civil society groups in the consultation. MSF notes available here.

Since the MSF:
DCMS have written out to department leads to request final commitments (which have been approved through ministerial offices and elsewhere).

As part of this process, departments should have been reaching out to civil society orgs to go over comments, especially if they needed clarification or discussion. I dont think there have been substantial changes made to commitments but I assume the comments have been incorporated or discussed. Please let me know if you have any questions on this.

Finalising the commitments should be completed before the end of November.

Next steps:
At the end of November/start of December, DCMS will activate the writeround process which will take a week-or-so for departments to clear (if all goes to plan and nothing is raised in this process). I imagine this will take us to the second week of December for publishing (should all go well).

This is also a period in which OGN will do a similar parallel process to discuss the overall plan amongst members and raise objections etc (of course you can already do this if you are concerned!). Do not be hesitant in raising concerns, especially if they have not been dealt with already.

The Action Plan is due to be published before the Christmas break.

Please let me know if you have questions - and feel free to openly discuss this on this list!



Dear colleagues,

I hope you are all well!

I am updating you all on the progress of the 4th Open Government National Action Plan.

As you may have gathered, development of the plan has again been pushed back since I last wrote to you all.

Currently, DCMS are collecting the signed off commitments from the various departments. Almost all of them are collected now so it is just the last two or three remaining (but are on senior officials desks for sign off). The plan is still to have the plan publishable by the end of the year, although that deadline is slipping each day and chances are that it will be published in January if we are being realistic.

11 December vote
This also all depends on the result of the 11 December vote in Parliament on the Brexit deal. If the vote fails then we go into unknown territory of course and so inevitably all officials will be focused on the outcome of that, meaning that the plan will definitely not get published until January (maybe later?).

In any case, if the plan is published in January (of course I am assuming no objections on the contents from civil society - so that could be another variable) then I would suggest that we as the Open Government Network make a public statement expressing our disappointment at how this action plan has developed.

Happy to hear the network’s thought about this.


Agreed! I fully support your suggestion.