Whether you are a civil servant or a civil society representative, you know all too well what hinders you from strengthening transparency, accountability, and participation in your contexts. And while your challenges can be unique, some are shared across countries and from national to subnational. These are the top challenges shared across regions.

“Whitewashing”: why do we commit and not act?

The motivations behind committing to open government are diverse, and range from international pressure, to individual political agendas, to inherited policies, to true multi-stakeholder interest. Often commitments lack either the political will needed to deliver them, or the analyses required for their implementation, monitoring, and evaluation. The outcomes are agreements that bring about little to no change, leaving behind just words on paper.

Lack of civic duty: where is the active citizen?

Doing open government work for an invisible citizen is a common feeling amongst open government influencers. This is especially true in young democracies, transitional societies, and contexts with low citizen engagement. It forces an open government influencer to ask: are citizens engaging? Why or why not?


Product development without use: we build, but are they coming?

All too often, open government products - resources, often technology driven, aimed at driving changes in governance processes - are created but not used. Sometimes this is a result of empty promises made to look good, get funding, or get voters. Other times, it is a result of poor design, including attempted adoption of ready-made solutions from another context without giving thought to how the product will be used and by whom.



Not all influencers have the same goals or barriers to reaching those goals. Archetypes - composite profiles of open government influencers - help you to imagine who you are, and the competencies that you want to focus on. They also show you other types of influencers who you may be engaging with, or want to partner with.