Submission on the Draft Open Government National Action Plan 2018-2020
CCA commends the government on pursuing an Open Government agenda. Greater transparency, participation and accountability in government will drive real improvements in performance and better outcomes for the Australian community. However, this requires governments to commit to collecting and making public a much higher level of outcome and impact reporting, not just of the services they contract, but of their own performance in achieving government policy goals.
CCA encourages the National Action Plan to be bolder and more visionary – to move from transparency to transformation. To realise Open Government, the Plan needs to embrace and support genuine partnership with the Australian community. This begins with clarity on policy goals; improving outcomes and impact measurement and reporting; building and sharing evidence; and moving to a partnership and relationship basis in contracting, funding and tendering processes. The disconnect between government policy goals and actions reflects the tendency for government to develop its own activities without consultation or real engagement about what will deliver the desired outcomes.
The charities and not-for-profit sector has deep experience of working with government, and a grounding in community where the outcomes of government policy and implementation are experienced. Unfortunately, government tends to dismiss the expertise of the sector and purchase its own version of solutions. This is not the partnership the sector or the community seeks. It reflects a closed approach to government.
The content of this submission includes: a brief background to CCA; an overview of the current context for the NFP sector; an outline of CCA’s concerns in relation to the eight areas of the Draft National Action Plan, and a conclusion.
CCA welcomes the opportunity to provide input into this consultation and is keen to engage in detailed discussion about the finalisation and implementation of the new National Action Plan.