Public engagement in Estonia • Hille Hinsberg • Government Communication Office • State Chancellery • Hille.email@example.com
What is public engagement? • Engagement is part of policy-making process. • It consists of • Informing the public (the right to know) • Consulting the public (the right to have a say) • Participation of the public (the right to be heard)
What role for State Chancellery? Raising awareness of the government institutions: • coordination of the area of public engagement in the governmental institutions; • participation in the work of the Joint Committee of government representatives and NGOs; • promoting the best practice of public engagement; • developing the electronic forms of public engagement (citizens’ opinions, e-consultations etc); • training of civil servants in the field of the effect of policies and legal acts and public engagement.
What has been done? • Research conducted about public engagement in Estonia • suggestions to the government, parliament and ngo-s how to improve public engagement. • This publication can be found at www.praxis.ee
Frameworkfor publicengagementin Estonia Estonian Civil Society Development Concept (approved by Parliament (Riigikogu), 2002) (EKAK - in Estonian) EKAK Activity Plan for implementing the CivilSociety DevelopmentConceptof the Estonian Civil Society for 2004-2006; the government approved next development plan for years 2007-2010
Code of conduct: guidelines for civil servants • Plan consultation into each project– proportion it according to the significance of the project • Make surethat all affected partiesareconsultedand that allthoseinterestedcan sendcomments • Reserve enough time for the consultation • Make a resume –bring out also those comments, that did not lead to changes • Evaluate how well you succeeded • Use simple language!
The present state of e-communication at the Central Government level • Web pages of • Parliament • Government • Ministries • Legislation (E-justice) - http://eoigus.just.ee/ • Direct democracy portal TOM www.eesti.ee/tom • Participation portal www.osale.ee
TOM – Today I Decide • Offers the possibility to submit ideas, guidelines and thoughts and to comment on the submission of others. • Five steps: • submission of an idea/proposal • commenting on the idea/proposal • editing the idea/proposal • voting for or against the idea/proposal • answering to the idea/proposal by the government department • www.eesti.ee/tom
e-participation website • new userfriendly e-participation website – www.osale.ee • assembles information about public engagement in Estonia; • e-consultations on strategic documents/policies; • submitting ideas/petitions