Open Government Partnership (OGP) through the citizens’ lens – Why do we need OGP more than we think?
According to the 2018 Freedom House report, Georgia remains classified as a hybrid regime with an aggregated score of 64 out of 100. Despite improvements in recent years, the country has faced setbacks in democratic development in terms of informal governance; the impact of oligarchic actors in the policy-making process; government interference with judicial independence, etc. Political corruption also remains a problem: the lack of measures to address high-level corruption resulted in a slight decline of public confidence in anticorruption institutions in 2017. Considering all these challenges, the development of democratic instruments that support open government principles is crucially important, and the Open Government Partnership (OGP) can be used as one of the effective tools in that process. Considering Georgia’s chairmanship of the Open Government Partnership — a multinational initiative enabling the government to combat corruption, improve the level of transparency and strengthen the principles of open governance — it is the right time to take a deeper look at the ideas surrounding OGP and ask a simple question: Why does the country need OGP and how can it assist Georgia in overcoming weaknesses in the democratic development process?