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 Seoul On-line Procedures Enhancement for Civil Applications (OPEN)
Focus: ICT for MDGs, Internet Governance
Description: Untitled Document

The costs of corruption and its toll on development have galvanized civil society around the globe into demanding more transparency and accountability from governments. In the spirit of decentralization and devolution of public services to bring them closer to the citizens, local administrations have also sprung into action to combat corruption. Seoul, as the capital and the centre of economic development of the Republic of Korea, has faced the problem of corruption that accompanies rapid economic growth. Recognizing that corruption is deterred not only by the good will or ethical conduct of public officials but also by institutionalizing effective systems, Seoul adopted a systematic approach to corruption. Among its preventive and punitive measures, public-private partnerships, and efforts to ensure transparency in its administration, the Seoul Metropolitan Government (SMG) has developed a web-based system that allows citizens to monitor corruption-prone applications for permits and approvals. This Online Procedures Enhancement for civil applications (OPEN) system makes it easier to raise questions in the event that any irregularities are detected.

Recognizing the OPEN system to be a successful example of an innovative approach to increasing transparency, deterring corruption, and bringing services closer to the citizen in public administration, the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA), through its Division for Public Economics and Public Administration, has signed a Joint Statement of Cooperation with the Seoul Metropolitan Government (SMG). Specifically, UNDESA and SMG, with the cooperation of the Asia Foundation, will hold the Seoul Anti-Corruption Symposium in Seoul on 30 and 31 August 2001. The main objective of the Symposium is to share the experience of Seoul with other major cities in order to assist them to achieve a more transparent and accountable administration. In addition, the Symposium will enable participants to share their own experiences on successful and not so successful anti-corruption initiatives. Based on these presentations and discussions, a manual on the OPEN system will also be reviewed for publication in the six working languages of the United Nations and for wide dissemination.



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