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.

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:

· Transparency alt

· Participation alt

· Accountability alt

Click on each standard to find out more about it and the areas that it covers.

Standards are still being drafted and open to public consultation, and we are constantly inviting the public to make comments, suggestions, and provide input. You can do so by writing to contact@opengovstandards.org.

For further information, a helpful Prezi presentation on Open Government Standards is also available here: ‘Understanding Open Government Standards’.