OGP Launches Fresh Call for Applications for Local Membership

Sanjay Pradhan

The Open Government Partnership (OGP) has launched a call for expression of interest from local governments from around the world, whether a state, prefecture or municipality, to join OGP as the initiative plans to admit up to 50 new local governments in 2022.

The OGP believes that local governments are closest to their citizens, resulting in innovative and ambitious open government reforms as they are in charge of delivering essential public services to the grassroots.

New local members admitted by the OGP will, after completing an orientation and training programme, be expected to develop and implement an OGP Action Plan through a multi-stakeholder co-creation process, monitor and learn from their progress and participate in peer exchange activities.

Details on responsibilities and process for new members can be found on the OGP Local Handbook which interested parties are encouraged to read before applying.

Membership of OGP Local comes with benefits for government and non-governmental stakeholders (civil society organizations, community organizations/groups, citizen councils/groups, citizen-led social movements, local chambers of commerce, universities, youth councils/groups, etc.) involved in the process. By joining, jurisdictions become members of a global community of local open government leaders.

OGP Local members have access to: a global network with more than 150 governments and more than 3000 civil society organizations in all continents; mentorships, research and knowledge products, peer exchanges, thematic and issue-based learning circles; featuring open government achievements through OGP’s communication channels and events; and online structured orientation and ongoing training on open government.

New members admitted into the initiative will receive the necessary guidance and support in order to plan, design and implement their own local open government reforms, co-create OGP action plans, and set up their evaluation and learning system.

Eligible to apply for the call are local jurisdictions (states, provinces, devolved nations, cities, towns, municipalities and other tiers of administration) from countries that are participating in OGP and that are not suspended at the time of applications are eligible to apply.

Additionally, the current government at the time of application must have at least 18 months left in their tenure to ensure new members sufficient time to develop the first OGP Local Action Plan.

Parties interested in joining OGP Local should submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) and a Letter of Support (LOS). The Expression of Interest Offline Form is available here for planning purposes. The EOI has to be supported by at least one non-governmental stakeholder and together, the government and non-governmental stakeholders coordinate regarding the application prior to submission. Interested local governments can also apply here.

The Expression of Interest must include one letter of support from the head of the jurisdiction (or senior official with delegated authority) and at least one from a non-governmental organization supporting the application. The letters should demonstrate their respective support for the application of their jurisdiction and must express their commitment to: meeting OGP values as written in the OGP Declaration; carry out the co-creation process; monitoring and learning of their action plan; and contribute to the global OGP Local community through peer learning, regional and global events, peer support and political leadership.

For further information please visit: https://www.opengovpartnership.org/ogp-local/join-ogp-local-call-for-expressions-of-interest-2022/. Interested jurisdictions must submit their application form before or on March 16, 2022.

OGP Local was launched in 2016 with the aim of building partnerships between local governments and civil society organizations to make governments more open, inclusive, participatory and accountable to their citizens.