Open Governance Network for Europe


The Open Governance Network for Europe is a joint initiative of the Democratic Society and the Open Government Partnership to connect and drive debate, learning, and innovation in open governance to improve democratic participation, transparency, and accountability in the European Union.


Convening a series of roundtables and public discussions on the shared challenges and opportunities facing Europe’s values, systems, and societies.


Organising workshops, trainings, and an annual retreat for European officials to learn and share experiences and best practices in democracy and open governance. 


Showcasing what open governance means in practice to different sectors of European society.


Democracy and Governance Practice Retreat 2021: In Crisis and Beyond
June 21-25, 2021
Register here

The first annual Democracy and Governance Practice Retreat will be held online on 21-25 June 2021. It will draw participants from the European institutions, EU member states governments, and national and European civil society to share, learn, and develop new understandings and skills in democratic participation, transparency, and accountability toward stronger policymaking, public services, and ultimately better democracy, fit for crisis and beyond. 

Led by the Open Governance Network for Europe, hosted and sponsored by the Portuguese Presidency of the Council of the EU, and organised in partnership with the European Commission, European Partnership for DemocracyDemocratic SocietyHertie SchoolNetherlands Helsinki CommitteeOpen Congracting Partnership, Open Government PartnershipOrganisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, and the UN Human Rights Office, this inaugural retreat will be held over one week, with a variety of interactive sessions focusing on the following themes: 

  • democracy and governance
  • civic space
  • civic participation 
  • rule of law, transparency, and accountability
  • future of practice for better climate policymaking

The retreat aims to help public servants and civil society learn and share new approaches to policymaking and public services that are found to help improve civic trust in governments and strengthen democracies in crisis and beyond. Through workshops, panel discussions, lectures, and exercises, retreat participants will discover how to build new governance approaches into everyday practice, and gain new knowledge together with peers across the European institutions and member states, as well as with leading thinkers and actors across civil society and international organisations.


Blog: Should the EU stop funding autocratic regimes? A Democracy Debate, May 4, 2021
Blog: Five Ways to Embed Open Gov Values in Online Political Advertising Regulation, April 14, 2021
Event recording: Is COVID-19 All Bad for Democracy? A Democracy Debate, January 14, 2021
Event: Can the European Democracy Action Plan Deliver? A conversation with Věra Jourová, December 4, 2020

Get in touch

Maria Koomen, lead, Open Governance Network for Europe


Twitter: @MariaKoomen


The Open Governance Network for Europe is a joint initiative of Democratic Society and the Open Government Partnership, and is grateful for the generous support of the Open Society Foundations.

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