The UK government was a founding member of the Open Government Partnership back in 2011, and since then has worked with a growing Open Government Network of civil society activists towards becoming more transparent, accountable and participatory. When the government first joined the international initiative, only a few actors from civil society were involved in developing the national action plan – the two-year plan for implementing governmental reforms. As we approach the third national action plan, not only have the number of civil society organisations involved grown, but representation from the devolved nations has also grown. This is a major step forward. Every level of government should strive to be open, not just Westminster.
The Centre for Public Scrutiny’s recent report therefore comes at an interesting time for the open government movement. Devo How? Devo Why? highlights the importance of transparency, accountability and involvement in the decisions made on devolution and the new governance frameworks set up amongst local and combined authorities.