Access Info Europe has led for the last year a campaign aimed to create Open Government Standards and promote them around the world. The idea was to set standards on what open, transparent, accountable and participatory government really means.
The website http://www.opengovstandards.org/ unfolds the work behind this project.
Open Government is a hot topic right now, but what does it really mean in practice? What should government be doing in the areas of Transparency, Participation and Accountability to qualify as “open governments”? What are the uses of new communications technologies, which really advance openness as opposed to merely perpetuating existing bureaucratic practices in a digital environment?
Our aim was to answer those questions, drawing together all the standards already developed by civil society into a coherent structure around the emerging concept of open government.
Therefore the Open Government Standards were drafted through a consultative process, involving all kind of civil society organisations across the world working to promote open government. They are an agreement on the basic elements of what constitutes open government, following one goal: to define the measures that different governments must adopt in order to advance and become Open Governments. For this reason, they were designed to be applicable in all countries, with a particular relevance for members of the Open Government Partnership.
Open Government Standards are structured according to three core pillars:
Global Legislative Openness Week: launch of international campaign to open legislatures
Madrid/Washington D.C., 15 September 2014 - Access Info Europe, as part of a group of 107 civil society organizations from around the world, including the Sunlight Foundation, the Latin American Legislative Network, Open Knowledge, and local Transparency International chapters launched a global campaign to highlight the importance of transparent and accountable legislatures, and to help parliaments embrace new technologies when publishing information about their work.
The public letter, issued in coordination with the Global Legislative Openness Week, calls on national assemblies to make parliamentary and legislative data open by default by proactively releasing information in open and structured formats and making it available to the public free of charge. These principles are enshrined in the Declaration on Parliamentary Openness, a call to parliaments for an increased commitment to openness.
In addition to civil society endorsers, early supporters of the campaign include members of the European Parliament, the Speaker's Digital Democracy Commission in the United Kingdom and the Brazilian Chamber of Deputies.
El Open Government Partnership da un aviso a España por no cumplir con las obligaciones de participación ciudadana
Madrid, 3 de septiembre de 2014 - El Open Government Partnership (OGP), iniciativa internacional que promueve el Gobierno Abierto y que cuenta con 64 países miembro, ha criticado a España y a otros once países por no cumplir con los compromisos adquiridos.
En la carta al Gobierno de España enviada el 30 de abril de 2014, se indica que el informe de revisión independiente realizado sobre la implementación del primer plan de acción español de gobierno abierto encontró que "España actuó de manera contraria al proceso de OGP en su último ciclo de Plan de Acción Nacional".
En concreto se acusaba a España de haber omitido por segunda vez la consulta pública obligatoria que los Estados deben hacer sobre los planes de acción en el que plantean sus compromisos para avanzar en las políticas de gobierno abierto.
Access Info Europe leads panel about open government in the OGP Regional Meeting in Dublin
Madrid, 30 April 2014 – Access Info Europe is coordinating a panel on ‘Open Government: standards and indicators for measuring progress’, as part of the Open Government Partnership Regional Meeting in Europe, which will take place in Dublin on 8 and 9 May.
Effectively measuring and evaluating open government has been a challenge for the OGP since its launch in 2011. Proposals such as the Open Government Standards, the Open Government Guide, and other initiatives and instruments have aimed to provide benchmarks and guidance for the evaluation of national action plan commitments.
Open Data Day 2014: Open Government Standards
Madrid, 22 February 2014 - As open data activists around the world celebrate "Open Data Day" on 22 February 2014, Access Info Europe recalls that Open Data is an integral part of all work to promote open government and has been integrated into the core of the Open Government Standards, which are being promoted by civil society as a framework for determining and evaluating government progress on openness.
To mark Open Data Day 2014, Access Info reiterated its call for governments to ensure that all data released in digital formats is made available in an open format. In practice this means releasing data in a machine-readable format using commonly available, open source or free software tools, and ensuring that the data can be processed, evaluated, and reused without limits. There must be no technical or legal limits on reuse of the information.
Helen Darbishire, Founder and Executive Director of Access Info, explained the importance of making government data freely available in open formats: "True openness means that everyone has the same opportunities to access and use public data sets. Open formats help unlock the social and economic potential of information, particularly large data sets, but also other types of data. Open formats permit wide distribution of information, which in turn contributes to better understanding of public institutions and increases opportunities to participate in decision-making processes."
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