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11 November 2019 – Officials Group meeting: minutes

Expert Advisory Panel & Officials Group


Date / time: Monday 11 November 2019, 10:00am - 12:10pm

Venue: Level 2, The Reserve Bank Building

Expert Advisory Panel attendees: Rachel Roberts, Catherine Williams, Jacqueline Paul, Farib Sos, Sean Audain and Phil Newman (the latter two by video link)

Officials: Office of the Clerk, Ministry of Youth Development, Ministry of Education, Parliamentary Council Office, Department of Internal Affairs, Archives New Zealand, Statistics NZ, Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment

Apologies: Suzanne Snively, Simon Wright

State Services Commission Officials: Larry Fergusson, Morag McConville

Agenda & Topic

1. Welcome

Catherine opened the meeting and welcomed the new members Jacqueline Paul, Dr Farib Sos and Sean Audain.

Farib, Jacqueline and Sean spoke about their aspirations for their membership of the EAP.

2. Process for Development of NAP 2020-2022

There was discussion about the need to leverage existing networks and events to go where people were already and connecting with the reasons people would have for wanting to engage on open government matters.

The EAP agreed it would be important to get ideas from officials into the discussion early. A part of this is about clarity about and a shared appreciation of the outcomes or impact that are being sought.

The Officials then joined the meeting at 11:00am.

There was discussion about the importance of providing people with context and telling the stories about how the public have influenced how Commitments have been developed and been implemented. There was also a need to provide a longer-term story about open government in New Zealand and how it was important to New Zealanders.

The possibility of inviting the participation of focus groups as Commitments are developed which could then participate in implementation as well was discussed positively.

We need to avoid public service speak in our communications, use language that people will connect with.

Officials recognised the importance of bringing their ideas for Commitments for the next plan into the conversation early.

Officials and EAP agreed that the approach as suggested should be put out to NZ for comment (note this is subject to SSC completing internal sign offs)

3. Progress Reports on National Action Plan 2018-20

The EAP complemented officials on the level of engagement they were achieving in the implementation of the Commitments but encouraged officials to demonstrate how they were connecting to people at the grassroots, going beyond proxies. They recognised this would be a challenge but would also develop a supportive constituency.

The IRM Reviewer will be looking to identify impacts in the End-Term Report. Officials should look to evidence impact in update reports. This could be demonstrated by the relationships that were being built as the Commitments are implemented (the modelling impact). The second element was evidence that pointed to the likely longer-term impact of the Commitment and the reason for it (its intended impact). It is useful to be thinking about this now.

EAP members departed at 12:00 and the meeting closed at 12:10.

11 November 2019 – Officials Group meeting: minutes