Open Process

We think process storytelling is a powerful way to help governments and organisations be more open and effective, provide a shared understanding, and make transparency and public participation easier.

Our Open Process work has inspired a growing movement - people who want to simply communicate their policies, processes or project pathways, and connect information in a visually compelling way for non-technical audiences.

Visual pathways and process maps can simply tell a compelling visual story, illustrate a journey, or the lifecycle of a project. They can also be used to make sense of data, connect context and link information in a meaningful way.

Pathways can demystify decision-making processes. They provide a shared understanding, a conflict deterrent, and the foundation for improved engagement. They help people understand what happened when with who, and their place in a process.

We are here to help people map their processes and design compelling print or interactive process pathways.

Our mission is to make useful content and tools to help people understand, navigate, and visualise complex processes. Our big vision is to create a home for people to publish and share their process stories and provide ways where they can track and see how things change over time.

We’re currently self-funding the development of Make Paths and our Open Process work through content creation partnerships.

We’re experimenting with different themes: natural resources and extractive industry (licences and project lifecycles), infrastructure projects, procurement and contract pathways, how legislation is created, origins of resources and materials, supply chains, and mapping community engagement and public participation in government policy design, decision-making and service delivery.

If you are interested in supporting us or have any process stories you need help visualising, get in touch! We’re open to innovation or civic tech funding opportunities too. 

Here are some of the ways we’ve used process pathways to demystify processes and help governments be more open and engaging.

THE OPEN GOVERNMENT PARTNERSHIP | PROCESS

To help raise awareness for Australia joining the Open Government Partnership (OGP), we made a process pathway to tell the story. The pathway shows how and when the Australian Government, citizens, civil society, the private sector, and small businesses worked together to develop Australia's 1st National Action Plan, released 7 December 2016. 

The poster was used widely at events and meetings by civil society, the Prime Minister and Cabinet OGP team , and the Independent Reporting Mechanism. The interactive version had useful links to the content generated during the development of the National Actions Plans and how people were involved. Since publishing the first version of the pathway the submission information has been moved. We’re working with the Australian Government to ensure this information is open and accessible again.

 

This version of the OGP Pathway was developed to coincide with the Open Government Summit in Paris in 2016. 


NSW mining & production | TITLES PROCESS

This poster tells the story of mining and production in NSW. Our objective was to show which stage community consultation and engagement should occur, when environmental reports should be available and when payments are made.

It was an essential service design and powerful engagement tool we developed whilst making Common Ground, Australia’s first open government web service designed using participatory design approach.

You can read more about the Common Ground project here. 

See the interactive version of the process pathway here.

Download the PDF poster here. 

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Once Common Ground was published the poster was adapted.

Seeing the mining and production licence process visualised in this way helped explain why people in communities across NSW were unhappy with the consultation and engagement process. The wider community had no idea exploration had taken place or projects had been planned for years until the PLAN phase when the Environment Impact Statement (EIS) was published for public comment usually for a window of only 45 days.

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At the time of making Common Ground, our Minister was responsible for the Department of Trade and Investment, Resources and Energy. After the launch, he became the Minister for Planning and Environment, where he changed policy and instated a CONSIDER phase in order for communities, the general public, and industry to be involved earlier in the process.

This was a great outcome and exemplifies the power of being able to visually see a process and how it can change over time.

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