Building Bridges Empowering citizens

We are approaching the midpoint of the 2030 timeline, and accelerating the implementation of the SDGs is imperative. Cities and regions play a pivotal role in this effort. This is why  OGP Local, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and United Cities, and Local Governments (UCLG), have come together to support local government efforts and promote an innovative approach to face this challenge, through the campaign Building Bridges, Empowering Citizens.


Over the next months UNDP, UCLG and OGP Local will highlight cases where cities, regions, and territories are innovating public policy by using open government strategies as well as data, indicators, and stories to communicate more effectively the importance of open government in SDG local action.

This campaign will start on World Cities Day (31st October) until International Anti-Corruption Day (9th December) highlighting cases where cities-regions-territories are innovating public policy by using open government strategies as well as data, indicators and stories to communicate more effectively the importance of open government in SDG local action.

Unveil the power of open government: cities and regions leading the way!

What is open government and why can it be a game-changer for your city or region?

An open government is transparent, it provides information and data about its actions, budgets and performance. It is accountable to society and responsive to citizen’s needs. It fosters the traceability of public decisions, allowing continuous and adequate public oversight by citizens, improving public management. An open government is inclusive and participatory, allowing citizens to be involved in the formulation, implementation and follow up of public policies.

By applying open government principles, cities and regions can include the innovation that emerge from citizens and the different actors in the territory to co-create ideas for better policy decisions. By bringing together transparency, participation and new technologies, a government can create value and adapt quicker to the changing times; leveraging citizens’ knowledge and technologies to transform and amplify the reach and impact of their actions. An open government redefines the basis of the public sector. It reshapes values and principles, promoting trust, institutional strength and robust democracy.

Did you know that cities and regions are driving forces behind the open government agenda? discover how they are shaping a more transparent, participatory, and accountable future!

Cities and regions are a natural space for adopting innovative open government principles. They are the level of government closest to people, where daily interactions between residents and the public sector take place. They have a better understanding of their territories and their communities’ needs. This level of government is best placed to use open government principles to enable communities to collaborate to advance sustainable development that is responsive to their local reality.
As UCLG´s “Pact for the future” identifies, there’s a strong call to reconnect with citizens in cities and regions worldwide, becoming a priority for forward-thinking city leaders. Reconnecting with citizens holds the key to revitalizing trust in the local public sector—a cornerstone not merely for service delivery, but for the entire governance system to work. As people expect more from their governments, there is a growing need for innovative channels of dialogue with local authorities that are transparent and promote accountability and inclusion. Mayors and Governors around the world are leading territories that co-innovate, co-create and co-design policies, services, tools and solutions together with their citizens; aiming to fight the decrease in public trust and improving the quality of life for citizens.

Ready to amplify transparency and accountability in your city or region? open government principles pave the way towards a stronger democracy!

Healthy democracies require competing ideas, not just elections. Democracy thrives when governments, citizens and the different actors in the territory are able to connect and support each other in achieving common goals. Transparency in government and creating spaces for public participation and accountability are necessary elements to ensure governments who serve their citizens. The complexities of modern societies and the current social, economic, political, and environmental challenges cannot be solved by a few actors or by the market alone. The local level is the place where democracy can be strengthened by bringing people along and making governments closer to the people, enabling them to tackle current challenges, and deliver on the needs of their citizens.

Willing to co-create your city's future? Open government transforms local communities and empower citizens!​

Open government is not just a checkbox exercise – it is a vibrant strategy to supercharge our cities and regions. By embracing inclusive decision-making, cities are fostering direct public involvement in policy formulation and implementation to ensure public needs guide the way. This collaborative approach including citizens, civil society, academia and the private sector, fosters inclusivity, empowerment, and can create safer environments. Cities have become vibrant hubs for collaborative innovation, where local stakeholders and governments join forces to tackle complex challenges and usher in a new era of effective municipal administration.

Eager to turn your city's data into positive change? Open Government can spark innovation at the local level!​

Local governments generate and commission large quantities of data and information, from transport patterns to consumer behavior. Government data that is freely accessible, reusable, editable, and shareable for any use by anyone can make governments more transparent and accountable; can help identify public problems and innovative solutions, as well as spur economic growth and innovation by allowing entrepreneurs in business and civil society to use and re-use this data to develop knowledge products that solve peoples’ everyday problems.

Looking for ways to enhance public services and make a real impact? open government can revolutionize service delivery in your city or region!

From essential services such as water and sanitation, to healthcare, waste management, food, and energy, cities and regions play the key role designing policies and delivering key public services. Forward-thinking city leaders are stepping up and opening up their administrations to work alongside their citizens to create cities that provide better public services. Transparency, participation, and accountability play a pivotal role in enhancing citizens’ well-being through responsive, fair, and competitive service delivery. Picture a city where women’s needs are met, where communities with clean water, safer streets, and a dash of innovation. Through responsive, fair, and competitive services, open governments are elevating lives and creating stronger communities. That’s the power of open government!

How local open government drives progress towards the agenda 2030 and the sdgs? open government principles can serve as a powerful driver for the development agendas at the city level!

Agenda 2030 highlights the importance of robust governance, capable institutions, and improved service provision. The open government agenda aligns perfectly, boosting progress toward the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 16 – the cornerstone of peace, justice, and strong institutions by prompting inclusivity, enhancing accountability, and curbing corruption. Opening the government paves the way for robust monitoring, evaluation, and reporting mechanisms, fostering transparent data systems and closer coordination between local governments, citizens, and stakeholders. 

Moreover, Open Government is not confined to a single goal; its impact spans across various SDGs. By involving citizens, civil society, and the private sector, cities can ensure that public needs drive decision-making, fostering inclusivity, women’s empowerment, and safer environments. This collaborative approach not only can yield innovative solutions but also can promote cost-efficiency and strengthen good governance, public management, and democracy over the long term. By adopting open government principles, cities can become catalysts for positive change, driving progress towards a more equitable and prosperous future. 

So, how can we make this a reality?

Let’s embrace open government principles as a catalyst to transform local governance. It’s not just a policy – it’s a vision of progress, a roadmap to a better tomorrow. Join us on this exciting journey, as we harness the promise of open government to shape cities that thrive, unite, and lead the way to a brighter world. Join the movement, and let’s make our cities more transparent, accountable, inclusive and sustainable!

Showcasing success stories: Case studies of cities and regions 

Opening the Justice System

Buenos Aires, Argentina

Accelerating the impact of the SDGs through local action powered by open government!​

Discover six actions​

Discover six actions that come together to unlock the true potential of cities and regions that, driven by open government principles, succeed in driving the acceleration of the 2030 Agenda and the SDGs, leaving a positive and lasting impact on local communities:


Amplify transparency

Local government is fertile ground for heightened transparency in governance. But information made transparent must be genuinely useful to and usable by citizens. Openly sharing data, policies, and decisions with citizens builds trust and helps visualize how government actions are aligned with the SDGs.


Foster civic engagement

In a territory with an open government, citizens become active partners in SDG endeavors. Through participatory platforms and inclusive decision-making, local and regional governments harness diverse expertise, resources, and perspectives to fast-track SDG implementation.


Build an inclusive government

Engaging all citizens, specially vulnerable groups, in the SDG process ensures diverse voices are heard. Communities can co-create solutions that respond to their particular needs, ensuring no one is left behind. An open government embraces the idea of co-creating public policies with civil society, and citizens, making the implementation of the 2030 Agenda in cities and regions a whole-of-society endeavor.


Promote innovation in participation

Cities and regions act as dynamic laboratories for open government innovations by tapping into citizen insights, fresh ideas emerge, igniting new approaches to meet SDG challenges. Moreover they promote collaborative synergy between citizens and the public administration.


Respond to citizen's feedback

Beyond feeling heard, citizens need to know that government is responsive to their voice. Closing the feedback loop requires that citizens monitor government activities, provide feedback and that government provide a response. By closing the feedback loop, local governments can course correct, keep citizens engaged, and deliver on achieving the SDG’s. Communicating with local and regional governments do is equally important, people need to know what their governments are doing!


Facilitating City-to-City collaboration

Adopting open government principles promotes city-to-city collaboration by sharing information and collaborating across levels and borders, transcending political, geographical, and cultural differences. It sets the building blocks for solidarity, mutual learning, and networking, allowing cities and regions to come together on a common path: achieving the Agenda 2030.

So, how can we make this a reality?

To open local government is to unlock the true potential of cities and regions to accelerate SDG action! Government-citizen collaboration is a dynamic force propelling cities and regions to the forefront of global change! Through transparency, collaboration, data-driven decisions, localized approaches, and citizen empowerment, cities and regions are revving up their engines and accelerating towards a future where the Sustainable Development Goals are not mere aspirations, but a vivid reality for their communities!

Showcasing success stories: Case studies of cities and regions that have achieved remarkable SDG progress through Open Government practices.

Open Gov - SDG

Sao Paulo

Open Gov - SDG


Cities and regions are driving the fight against corruption and progress toward sdgs through open government

Open government gets to the roots of corruption. It enables the prevention, identification and sanctioning of corruption acts and nurtures a culture of honesty by empowering the community to provide oversight. Through a shared commitment to open government, cities and regions are forging a path towards transparent, accountable and inclusive governance and upholding the values of integrity and trust to foster sustainable development.

This dynamic synergy between local open governance, trust and sustainable development is weaving a remarkable tapestry of progress that includes:

Local action, global impact

By cultivating transparent, accountable, and participatory governance, cities and regions are combating corruption and forging a transformative path that aligns with the 2030 Agenda’s vision of sustainable and inclusive development, propelling their communities towards SDG achievement.

Transparent actions and transactions

Transparent procurement promotes fairness by ensuring that local contracts are awarded based on merit and unbiased criteria. By openly disclosing budget allocations, contract awards, and expenditures, cities and regions are effectively curbing opportunities for corrupt practices.

Empowered citizen participation and strengthen accountability in local institutions:​

Cities and regions are strengthening partnerships and fostering a collaborative ecosystem involving local government, the private sector, civil society, and other local stakeholders to reinforce accountability checks, creating a powerful defense against corruption.

Curbing undue-influence​

Opening up information on the persons and actions behind government decisions, prevents elite capture of policies favoring a few in detriment of all. By opening up decision-making processes, governments can combat citizen distrust and apathy, and reduce the corrosive perception that government favors the few over the many.

Data-driven insights​

Leveraging analytical tools on open data sources enables local authorities to detect irregularities and trends, empowering targeted interventions to address corruption risks effectively. Open data policies promote access to data related to public services, infrastructure projects, and social indicators.

Citizen-centric service delivery​

Reduced corruption means resources are allocated to the services, programs and infrastructure benefiting citizens. Through participatory approaches, cities and regions are aligning service delivery with citizens’ needs and priorities and minimizing corruption risks.

So, how can we make this a reality?

Cities and regions worldwide are at the forefront of the fight against corruption. Through the adoption of open government policies they are driving progress towards the 2030 Agenda, and leading the way towards achieving the SDGs, ensuring a better future for all!

Showcasing success stories: Case studies of cities and regions that have achieved remarkable action in battling corruption through open government practices

UNDP, United Cities and Local Government and the Open Government Partnership Local have come together to support local government efforts to innovate Open Local Government and improve transparency and communicating in local decision making.