Why you should join the Open Government Network in NI

Why you should join the Open Government Network in NI

12 November 2014

Following our event last week in which the The Building Change Trust hosted a seminar and discussion session for all those organisations and individuals interested in progressing an open government agenda and getting involved in a campaign for the implementation of the Open Government Partnership (OGP) in Northern Ireland.

We had a lot of organisations and individuals come forward to express an interest in joining the network.

Here are just a few of their reasons: 

Ali Stoddart from the Democratic Society said that DemSoc is a national partner with the Cabinet Office on open policy making, therefore they were happy to support the growing activity in Northern Ireland. 

Andrea Thornbury from NICVA recognises the need for greater transparency and felt that the Open Government Network could provide greater access to information and data in the future. 

Lisa McElherron also from NICVA simply called for change. 

Ann Allan said that she felt there is too much secrecy in government and an Open Government Network would present the opportunity for people to scrutinise the actions of their politicians. 

Carolyn Brown of the Federation of Small Businesses said that small businesses are an integral part of civil society and the community, and they need to fully understand how decisions are made. 

Colin Neiland from Communitus called for a better and more effective use of resources, saying that greater collaboration within and across sectors could lead to a better society for all. 

DETI said that the commitments supported by the Open Government Network represent what they should be doing already: “We need to build and improve relationships across all sectors to improve policy making". 

The Green Party at Queen’s University want to enable greater citizen awareness, knowledge and participation in decision making that will affect them.

Patrick Corrigan from Amnesty said that the Open Government Network could help to rebuild the economy and rebalance the community need to rebuild trust and rebalance power between Government and NI citizens.

These are their reasons, but what are yours? Get involved in the debate using the hashtag #opengovni.