Open Government Partnership and Sustainable Development Goal Number 16: Similarities and Differences

This paper is a modest contribution to a main focus of the upcoming 2015 Open Government Partnership (OGP) Global Summit: How principles of open government can support compliance with the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations Post-2015 Agenda. The specific question we address within this broader context is “What lessons do the OGP processes and results offer for development and implementation of national strategies and actions plans for achieving the proposed governance Sustainable Development Goal Number 16 (SDG #16)?
OGP and SDG #16 objectives and target areas have substantial overlap, but some SDG targets go beyond OGP (Section II). The target areas that correspond with OGP implementation experiences provide promising potential for countries to gain substantive insight for SDG #16 action planning and advocacy. The case study of the Philippines confirms that the OGP is a high value learning resource for SDG #16 in at least 5 out of 10 target areas (Section III). The overlap and cross learning potential between OGP and SDG agendas raises the question of whether there will be symbiosis or competition between the two (Section IV). Based on these findings, a 5-point framework for civil society organizations (CSOs) to strategize their participation in SDG #16 advocacy, action planning and follow-up is suggested (Section IV).
The findings and recommendations of the paper should be viewed as preliminary as they are outcome of a work done over a short period and with modest resources. The paper raises many issues for further discussion at the OGP Global Summit in October 2015 and in further research.

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