#SluggerSpeaks: What would Open Government in Northern Ireland look like?

You can post questions directly into the DigitalLunch panel from the Google Plus Event page here or into the YouTube Video here.

Ahead of the publication of a draft action plan for the Open Government Network in Northern Ireland in the next weeks and tonight’s event is an open opportunity to feed ideas into that process, whilst hope creating a wider splash to help grow the network further.

For those unfamiliar with the format, a #DigitalLunch is a video chat convened through Google’s Skype like ‘Hangout’ service broadcast via YouTube. It enables us to have a real time conversation between people in different places.

You will also be able to view it here when the hangout goes live at about 7.30pm. It would great if you can join us live. We put it in the evening so that you can join and participate regardless of whether you work in the public, private or voluntary sector.

As well as a panel of three guest speakers chaired by Yours Truly: Politicians and Open Gov  – John Barry, Councillor North Down; Open Policy Making – Matilda Murday, Democratic Society; Open Government overview – Tim Hughes, Involve

We also have an interrogative ‘counter-panel’ of Northern Ireland network members. None of these will be in any official capacity, but will act as an interrogative role of the experts, and bring some questions of their own.

We’d to hear your questions and issues for those inside the Hangout to discuss, tease out and otherwise consider. These can be shared before and during the event by leaving them here or tagging your ‘Tweets’ with #OpenGovNI.

Once the event goes live this evening, you can watch live and listen by going to my own YouTube page (youtube.com/mickfealty), sluggerotoole.com or the event page at Google Plus (http://goo.gl/m5FNGW).

There you will be able to use the Q&A app on the live YouTube page to share your responses directly with the panel inside the Hangout. This is a particularly effective tool for helping to broaden the discussion, so we really do encourage you to try it out.

So please give us your questions…?


  • mickfealty

    I’ll share three of the short cuts from the panelists opening pitches here in the morning. Belfast Barman who was one of the OpenGovNI Network’s counter-panelist will be writing to invite those interested in talking in real in a real place to chat further about Open Government in a pub in the next week or two…

    If some of you have been enjoying our recent commitment to finding out what on earth is going on in Health (which would be start before we try suggesting ways to fix it)… this could be serious fun!

    If you want to join the network (which is basically about networking and being kept informed of future events and opportunity, you can at: http://tinyurl.com/OpenGovNI.

    So, stand by…

  • nigel mckinney

    Interesting stuff all.

    Thought I’d share a couple of things which are more on the participation side as opposed to the transparency

    Firstly the new Rural Development Programme has an emphasis on local participation within the Local Action Groups established to distribute EU monies. Now the overall amount of money is small wrt scale of public spending – but let no one say that there is not an appetite for public engagement in decision making relating to their communities

    It looks like more than 2000 people have signed up as members of the LAGS.

    Think of the potential for community planning



    Secondly I was at an event last year with the British Trust for Ornithology

    Their surveys, done on a voluntary basis provide huge amounts of scientific data which can be used by and analysed by other NGOs as well as government and linked with other data
    People are willing to participate , that participation needs to be enabled and supported