Open Government Partnership (OGP) was officially launched on Sept 20th, 2011. At the opening ceremony President Barack Obama declared:
The purpose of the Open Government Partnership was to advance specific initiatives to promote transparency, fight corruption, and energize civic engagement and to leverage new technologies so that we strengthen the foundation of freedom in our own countries while living up to ideals that can light the world. Barack Obama
President Obama challenged the other countries to come back, the same year, with concrete commitments. Fifty-five countries now belong to OGP and 47 joined in the past 8 months.
A quarter of the world’s people now live in OGP countries, each of which has outlined concrete, credible steps that it will take to open the work of government so citizens are empowered, problems are solved, democracy is strengthened. Hillary Clinton
At the opening ceremony Hillary Clinton stated:
In the 21st century, the United States is convinced that one of the most significant divisions among nations will not be north/south, east/west, religious, or any other category so much as whether they are open or closed societies.
Ireland is not a member of OGP and the Irish government was not represented in Brasilia 2012.
OGP Ireland campaign
As a result of the correspondence and Social Media campaign, Maureen O’Sullivan T.D. made an official inquiry in the Dáil Éireann and an official reply on question No.67 was received from the Irish government:
From a reply issued by the Irish Government the following comes into the light:
First, it is clear that the Irish Government learnt about global partnership from a citizen.
Second, despite of the clear guidance on OGP website that the initiative has to come from the state which intends to join, the Irish government expects to be invited
Third, yes, OGP promotes transparency. But its completely new for Ireland form of “transparency”:
Most importantly participating countries commit to increasing the availability of information about governmental activities, supporting civic participation, implementing the highest standards of professional integrity throughout their administrations and increasing access to new technologies for openness and accountability:
We believe that countries with open governments, open economies, and open societies will increasingly flourish. They will become more prosperous, healthier, more secure, and more peaceful.” “And those societies that believe they can be closed to change, to ideas, cultures, and beliefs that are different from theirs, will find quickly that in our internet world they will be left behind. Hillary Clinton
We urge the Irish government to join OGP without any further delay and follow examples of other 55 member states which committed to conducting a public consultation with civil society on enhancing greater use of technology in making Ireland more transparent, participatory and inclusive.
Thank you for your support.
- read “Top Ten Commitments To Open Government As Representatives From 73 Countries Gather in Brasilia”
- read “73 countries gather for Open Government Partnership meeting”
- read a transcript of Clinton’s speech
- read Warren Krafchik’s prepared address OGP2012 “The era of accountability has arrived”
- watch Alex Howard’s [@digiphile] interview with Chris Vein [@opengov] and Warren Krafchik [@krafchik]