Press release

UK sets out objectives as joint chair of global partnership on global government

The UK will use its 18-month co-chairmanship of the international Open Government Partnership (OGP) to make the partnership a force for global change.

CAB 023-12 

The UK will use its 18-month co-chairmanship of the international Open Government Partnership (OGP) to help establish the partnership as a sustained force for global change.  We will learn from our partners and share our best practice so we can achieve our transparency objectives at home and abroad even faster, said Cabinet Office Minister Francis Maude today.

In Brasilia today, as the UK takes over the co-chairmanship of the OGP from the United States, the minister will address delegates including heads of government, civil service organisations and businesses.

The Open Government Partnership brings developed and developing countries together to promote transparency, increase accountability and harness new technologies.  Open government can help fight corruption, engage citizens, spread prosperity and save lives.

Francis Maude said:

The UK is proud to help lead this important and growing global movement to openness.

We are eager to share our experience of implementing open government with the other member countries because we have much to learn from each other.

In the UK, we have already made great strides towards being the world’s most transparent government and in the future we will be going even further.

As the Open Government Partnership’s co-chair we will champion the power of transparency to change the relationship between governments and citizens, drive economic and social growth, and increase the efficiency and effectiveness of public services.

Notes to Editors

  1. The Open Government Partnership is a new multilateral initiative that aims to secure concrete commitments from governments to promote transparency, empower citizens, fight corruption, and harness new technologies to strengthen governance. In the spirit of multi-stakeholder collaboration, OGP is overseen by a steering committee of governments and civil society organizations.
  2. The first annual summit meeting of the OGP takes place in Brasilia today, as the UK takes over the role of co-chair from the United States. Brazil will continue as OGP co-chair alongside the UK until September 2012.
  3. The OGP Co-Chairs provide strategic leadership to the initiative, convene the steering committee as necessary (quarterly), facilitate proposals on relevant policy/governance issues, and conduct outreach on behalf of OGP with governments, civil society, the private sector, donors and the media.  The lead chair is charged with hosting the annual OGP Conference and Steering Committee meetings, with assistance from the support chair. Starting in September 2012, Steering Committee co-chairs will rotate on an annual basis, with each chair serving a two-year term: one year as a supporting chair, followed by one year as the lead chair.  Steering Committee co-chairs will be designated every three years for the subsequent three-year cycle, beginning in September 2011. Because the UK is taking up its role in April, the total tenure of the co-chairmanship will be 18 months.
  4. The UK will have the role of ‘junior’ co-chair, alongside ‘senior’ co-chair Brazil, from April to September 2012, and will then have the role of ‘senior’ co-chair until September 2013.
  5. Transparency is a key component of the UK Government’s public services reform agenda and of its programme of support for economic and social growth. Transparency commitments have been taken forward through three major policy announcements: the first two through prime ministerial letters to government departments in May 2010 and July 2011; with additional commitments announced as part of the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement, in November 2011. Find out about the Government’s Transparency programme here.
  6. The National Audit Office report “Cross-government review - Implementing transparency”, published today, is available on the NAO website at www.nao.org.uk  It recognises the UK’s achievements to date. It highlights progress in fulfilling the vast majority of initial transparency commitments, including the significant increase in the amount and type of public sector information released. The number of data sets available at www.data.gov.uk grew from 2,500 in January 2010 to 7,865 in December 2011
  7. You can stay in touch with government activity on Transparency and Open Data at www.data.gov.uk, and through Twitter: @UKTransparency; @datagovuk; and @cabinetofficeuk and with the Open Government Partnership @opengovpart

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