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Accepted Paper:

Infrastructures over the social in the open government implementation: Ecuador's open public procurement platform case  
Daniel Vizuete (CTS Lab de la Facultad Latinoamericana de Ciencias Sociales, FLACSO - Sede Ecuador)

Short abstract:

The Open Government paradigm emphasizes transparency, participation & collaboration, but in the implementation the challenges arise. The case of Ecuador's procurement platform shows how to prioritize infrastructure over social changes, a distorted vision of the Open Government paradigm is generated

Long abstract:

The Open Government Initiative, spearheaded by the Barack Obama Administration, emphasizes transparency, participation, and collaboration in public policies as fundamental pillars for enhancing public policies worldwide. This approach, advanced by entities like the Open Government Partnership (OGP), aimed to leverage ICT advancements to foster citizen engagement and improve governmental efficiency.

However, an examination of 1133 action commitments across 15 Latin American OGP countries reveals an imbalance in implementing these principles. Transparency, particularly in infrastructure-focused areas like Open Budget Platforms and Open Data Databases, often takes precedence over fostering social and institutional changes necessary for genuine collaboration and participation and neglecting broader social and institutional changes.

Based on an analysis of official documents on this project and interviews with policy makers, technicians and users, we delve into the process of embodying the principles of Open Government in the implementation of Ecuador's "Open Information on Public Procurement" commitment, that illustrates this imbalance. Despite aiming to enhance citizen engagement and efficiency in procurement processes, the implementation process highlights challenges in aligning techno-promises with Ecuador's political and technical landscape. The platform's effects differ from expectations, yielding unintended consequences, underwhelming outcomes, and a distorted version of the open government paradigm. Highlighting the generation of new forms of opacity in sensitive information and changing the citizen participation.

This distortion results from the prioritization of transparency infrastructure investment over social and institutional reforms. The study underscores the need of taken into account dynamics of pre-existing policy formulation and nuanced adaptation of open government principles to diverse contexts.

Traditional Open Panel P224
Big data and artificial intelligence global asymmetries: infrastructures, skills, uses, value and side effects
  Session 2 Friday 19 July, 2024, -