Open Government Partnership Australia

Accountability

How might we make government more accountable?

Australia prides itself as a country with strong and robust institutions and transparent practices in politics, business and public life but there is always room to do more. To date, as part of OGP National Action Plans, we have delivered a range of initiatives to help open up government and make its processes more transparent and visible to its citizens. For example: 

•    As part of NAP1,  improvements in whistleblower protections in the tax and corporate sectors resulted in the passing of the Treasury Laws Amendment (Enhancing Whistleblower Protections) Bill 2018 on 19 February 2019. This bill creates single, strengthened whistle-blower protection regime covering the corporate, financial, insurance, superannuation, and credit sectors. 
•    In both NAP1 and NAP2 we also delivered commitments that have helped to inform the Government’s consideration of establishing a Commonwealth Integrity Commission. 

We heard during the discovery phase that people were interested in more information on how decisions are made and on the evidence base that underpins them. We are seeking your views on what type of commitments could be included in Australia’s third National Action Plan 2020-22.

We are looking for specific ideas, and encourage you to consider the following when submitting your ideas:

•    What is the idea (is it a policy, a new service or new technology or something else)?
•    What problem does the idea solve and/or what opportunity does it seize?
•    What are the benefits of this idea (for example – does it help government be more accountable, transparent and accessible to the public)?
•    Who will deliver it, and how might the broader public be involved in this idea?
 

If you need some prompters, pleae refer to the design questions that are being used to help genreate ideas. Post your ideas below!

Timeline 

•    Challenge opens – 10 Feb 2020 and closes on 1 March 2020.
•    Ideas will then be considered by the Open Government Forum (offline), who will develop a shortlist of Draft Concepts for further public comment (March 2020).
•    Draft Concepts will be further refined by Working Groups (offline) during April 2020 and turned into Draft Commitments.
•    Draft commitments will be presented here for final feedback and challenge closes (May 2020).

2 ideas submitted!
Submissions for new ideas have now closed

The early NAPs reviewed the gaps in the Integrity framework. It is clear there are numerous gaps needing attention including -
- a national integrity commission (as agreed by government and subject to seeing a Bill)
- Parliamentarians codes of conduct
- Independent ethics advice for all MPs, Senators and staff
- Streamlined declarations of interests

Ministerial advisers have far greater influence in public policy and administration than is generally recognised, yet there seems to be no means to hold them publicly accountable.