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The World Bank Group and Russia: Cooperation on Open Government

December 12, 2012

MOSCOW, December 12, 2012  –  A meeting between Мikhail Abyzov, Minister for Open Government, and World Bank team headed by Michal Rutkowski, Country Director and Resident Representative, took place yesterday.  The meeting was also attended by Chris Vein, Chief Innovation Officer for Global ICT Development at the World Bank and former Deputy United States Chief Technology Officer for Government innovation at the Office of Science and Technology, Executive Office of the President.

The parties discussed the current state and prospects for cooperation between the Russian Government and the Bank on issues related to “Open Government” development and promotion in Russia.

«The World Bank offers an excellent “knowledge library”, expertise and a possibility to integrate best international practices into governance systems at the subnational level. It is encouraging that the Bank starts to actively cooperate with Russian regions in promoting government transparency,” stated Mikhail Abyzov.

During  the initial stage of cooperation the Russian Government and the Bank intend to host in the coming two days a joint international conference “Open Government: International Experience in Open Government and Russia’s National Action Plan on Accession to Open Government Partnership”. 

The conference is the first high-level international event focused on the principles and mechanisms of Open Government to be held in the Russian Federation. The main objective of the conference is to present Russia’s key achievements in arranging the Open Government initiative and to come up with an action plan for promoting reforms in this area.    

Leading Russian and international experts, government officials, representatives of private sector and civil society will participate in a variety of discussion formats (panels, round tables, master classes, brainstorming sessions). Participants will exchange best practice and successful country cases of Open Government programs to see what can be applicable for Russia.

In the course of the conference the Bank experts will present international experience in the areas of Open Government, Open Government Data and ICT for social accountability.   The World Bank has also invited regional government officials to a side-event to learn about international experience in developing an Open Government Ecosystem at the regional level. 

When speaking about prospects of cooperation with the Russian Federation, Michal Rutkowski suggested: «We are happy that the Russian Government has embraced our Open Government paradigm and is so actively engaged in implementing open government at the federal and subnational level. The Bank acknowledges Russia’s significant achievements in this area and will be supporting initiatives aimed at developing the Open Government Ecosystem in the course of our cooperation.”

In April 2012 the Russian Government expressed its desire to accede to the Open Government Partnership and to committing to increase the transparency of governance. The National Action Plan on accession to Open Government Partnership and promotion of open government in Russia will be discussed in detail at the conference.

As the next step in cooperation, the parties agreed to design a framework agreement covering several areas that include “Open Ministry” and “Open Region”, and to come up with an implementation plan. 

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