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Australia Joins the Open Government Partnership
Today the Australian Government Attorney General and Special Minister of State, the Hon Mark Dreyfus QC, has announced that Australia is joining the Open Government Partnership. This historic announcement brings Australia into a consortia of over 60 countries that are committed to:
"more transparent, effective and accountable governments -- with institutions that empower citizens and are responsive to their aspirations" – OGP About Page.
Australia is well positioned to join the Open Government Partnership and this announcement builds on the earlier work of the Australian Government’s response to the Gov 2.0 Taskforce. The Department of Finance and Deregulation reported on the progress of Gov 2.0 in Australia last July.
The key Australian Government 2.0 activities to date include:
- the Declaration of Open Government by the Australian Government in July 2010;
- providing leadership, guidance and support to enable public servants to engage online;
- establishing data.gov.au as the Australian Government’s central public dataset repository;
- establishing awards to encourage and recognise excellence in Government 2.0;
- establishing the Creative Commons BY licence as the default licence for public Australian Government information; and
- providing guidance and support to make public sector information accessible and reusable.
By joining the Open Government Partnership, Australia is committing to:
- The Open Government Partnership Declaration - a statement of commitment to improving access to information about government activities, improving civic participation, high standards of professional integrity in the public service, and increasing access to new technologies for openness and accountability. Read the entire declaration for more details.
- Develop an OGP Action Plan which outlines a vision for open government in Australia, the open government efforts to date and the roadmap for open government looking ahead, including some of the challenges and opportunities facing us in this space. The Action Plan must take into account the OGP Independent Reporting Mechanism which objectively measures success in this space. This Action Plan will be created in a transparent and open way by a cross agency working group that reports publicly on a regular basis. We intend to engage civil society, NGOs and industry strongly in the process.
Practical examples of what this Action Plan might entail includes looking at open data, parliamentary transparency, online engagement, policy co-production, public reporting on government activities, and public service professionalism.
OGP Action Plans are expected to cover a two-year period, with governments reporting on progress on an annual basis. We look forward to working collaboratively across agencies, governments, industry and the broader community to get the most beneficial and effective possible open government action plan for Australia.
The Minister's media release is available here.
Last updated: 27 June 2014