The Role of Diplomatic missions in Open Government

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Cretu, Veronica
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University of Malta; DiploFoundation
The purpose of this research paper is to assess the degree to which Open Government values and principles are being implemented by the diplomatic missions of Moldova and Malta, particularly in regards to their work with civil society and citizens’ participation in policy-making. While Moldova is one of smallest Newly Independent States (NIS), aspiring towards EU integration, has made significant steps ahead towards its EU integration Agenda, particularly by signing as of June 27th 2014 the EU Association Agreement along with Ukraine and Georgia, it is still in transition phase and there is a lot to be done in order to this country become a model of success for its neighbors in the Eastern Partnership and in the EU as well. Moldova is a young democracy that got its independence from the Soviet Union in 1999, and is still facing several challenges related to the implementation of the democratic principles and values, combating corruption which is pervasive and entrenched at all levels. Malta on the other hand, after ten years of joining EU is considered to be one of the European Union’s most astounding success stories. It has made incredible strides in transforming itself into a modern, competitive economy since it joined EU in May 2004 and the Eurozone in 2008. However, the road towards EU has not been easy at all. Today, it is a home for strong democracy and civil society engagement and a country with one of the most politically active population in Europe. Both Moldova and Malta are members of the Open Government Partnership (OGP) since 2011. Open Government Partnership is a global, voluntary, multi-stakeholder international initiative that aims to secure concrete commitments from governments to their citizenry to promote transparency, empower citizens, fight corruption, and harness new technologies to strengthen governance. This paper looks both at the degree to which membership in OGP has created more space and venues for ambitious open government commitments in Moldova and Malta, the current status of the OGP commitment implementation and the degree to which diplomatic missions of these two countries could join efforts around playing a more active role in the national open government agenda.