‘Open Up’ Digital Democracy Commission’s Report published

26 January 2015

The Speaker’s Commission on Digital Democracy has published its report ‘Open Up’. The report recommends how Parliament can use digital technology to help it to be more transparent, inclusive, and better able to engage the public with democracy.

Commenting on the report, the Rt Hon John Bercow MP, Speaker of the House of Commons said:

“I set up the Digital Democracy Commission to explore how Parliament could make better use of digital technology to enhance and improve its work. I am very grateful to all those who contributed to the Commission's work, and have been particularly struck by the enthusiastic contributions from those who expressed a desire to participate in the democratic process, but felt that barriers existed that prevented them from doing so.

This report provides a comprehensive roadmap to break down barriers to public participation. It also makes recommendations to facilitate better scrutiny and improve the legislative process.

In a year where we reflect on our long democratic heritage, it is imperative that we look also to the future and how we can modernise our democracy to meet the changing needs of modern society."

Background to the report

The Commission’s report is the culmination of a year’s worth of events and meetings, talking to people across the UK face to face and via digital means, about how to use digital technology to improve parliamentary democracy.

The Commission held well over one hundred informal meetings and over twenty roundtable discussions across the country. The Commission spoke to a wide range of people, including people from the tech industry, young people, voluntary organisations, adults with learning difficulties, academics, people with visual and hearing impediments, civil servants, marketing and public relations experts. It received thousands of tweets and more than 150 longer written contributions. Full details of who has helped us over the past year are included in the report.

Further information

The Commission members are: Robert Halfon MP; Meg Hillier MP; Paul Kane, President of Community DNS; Professor Cristina Leston-Bandeira, Professor of Politics, University of Hull; Helen Milner, Chief Executive of the Tinder Foundation; Emma Mulqueeny, Founder of Rewired State and Young Rewired State; Femi Oyeniran, Actor, Film maker and Youth Ambassador; and Tony Pearce, President of the National Union of Students.

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