Ministry believes in the importance of helpful dialogue, and wants to utilize experiences of education field professionals of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in decision-making and development. For this purpose ministry uses technology for giving them opportunity to communicate with ministry and share their experiences, solutions, ideas and complaints using its e-Means like blogs, comments, surveys, polls and ratings for ministry services they use.
As per the norm ministry moderates the participations and reviews them before publishing by ensuring there relevance to state laws governing this domain. Ministry also guarantees freedom of participation and speech in using provided e-Means, for this participant have to submit their personal information and their preferred mode of contact. Ministry and its staff, or its representatives are not accountable for any comments or material submitted through its e-Participation channels.
e-Participation Policy in Decision Making:
Ministry welcomes opinions of professional individuals and stakeholders in decision-making and in shaping its future policies. By doing so ministry is justifying its role of serving the citizens, scholars and well-informed community of Saudi Arabia.
Taking into consideration that human work is likely to be imperfect and having errors, participation of experienced professionals of education field, provides ministry the opportunity of measuring its decisions, reviewing its policies, and correcting them if there are shortcomings before its adoption and application.
In traditional ways, receiving insights and suggestions from professionals was inconvenient for many, but in e-Participation they had technology at their disposal which allows them to express freely, additionally e-Participation offers many advantages such as:
- Participation on much wider scale.
- Fairness and transparency.
- Objectivity and zero bureaucratic influence.
- Swiftness in decision-making, because of e-Participation analysis methods.
Ministry makes available a multitude of e-Tools like comments, ratings, direct communication, blogs, forums, opinion polls, directed questionnaires, complaints and recommendations. Ministry might use all or some of these tools in the participation process as it deems fit for the topic discussion. Participation tools are stated each time a topic is up for discussion.
Policies and Regulations:
Ministry aspires to put up every issue for discussion and consultation that it deems helpful to perform its role in serving citizens and education in the kingdom. Ministry invites all citizens and organizations to participate with their visions and expertise where it entails public interest, using all e-Means available on its e-Portal (comments, ratings, contact-us page, blogs, forums, opinion surveys and questionnaires).
In general, the nature of topics put up for discussion depends on ministry's need, if it think that consultation and participation is necessary, it also depends on the relevance of these topics to the audience and its influence on them.
Topics will be open for discussion for all, to participate and convey their opinions, if ministry felt choosing particular audience for consultation, for example, scholarship students, then ministry will invite
only this segment to participate and help in decision-making.
Using ministry channels for e-Participation obviously implies ministry's right to use these participations in decision making transactions and drafting of future policies.
Ministry pledges to review participations periodically, but at the same time, it is not feasible for it to review all participations, hence ministry is not committed to review or reply to all participations. Ministry also reserves the right not to publish, or to remove participations, that are not in line with its policies or prevailing laws in Saudi Arabia without any liability.
In no way ministry or its employees, staff or representatives are legally liable for any disputes arising from the publishing of comments or notes in its e-Participation channels. Ministry seeks to publish and archive the results of e-Participation transactions but there is no compulsion of any kind on the ministry to do so.
e-Participation Standard Process:
In general, e-Participation goes through several standard stages in a process that ends with taking decision and application. Ministry may modify, expedite or bypass some stages it deems appropriate for topics discussed.
The stages of the process are:
First - Start of Discussion:
At first ministry publishes on its e-Portal topics it presents to the public requiring their e-Participation in decision-making.
Discussion terms clearly states:
- The topic of discussion, including a preamble and references for the topic, goals of putting if for discussion, timeframe, available tools for participation in discussion, and internal moderatio of the decision-making process in the organization.
- Target audience of the participation.
- Elaboration of the significance and Role of the target audience in the decision and the extent their interests are affected by the topic.
- Laws and regulations of e-Participation in decision-making.
Second - Publishing:
Ministry of Education announces the topics on its e-Portal and invites the public for their participation. Publishing takes place on the e-Portal, additional publishing modes like Newspapers are used if the nature of topics calls for broader participation and the ministry deems fit its use. After publishing, tools of e-Participation will be opened for target audience to send in their opinion and insights.
Third - Collection of Participations:
After opening and moderation of e-Participation, ministry will collect and classify participations. In this stage, ministry also communicates if possible and responds to participations, that requires clarification and assistance of the ministry.
Fourth - Analysis of Participations:
After the set timeframe for participation ends, and participations get collected, ministry concludes the topic participation, and after classification and analysis of participations, the appropriate entries are used in decision-making and policy drafting.
Fifth - Decision Making and Announcement:
After the analysis stage, the ministry reviews participations, takes decision and prepares response for the e-Participation. Afterwards it announces the response and the decision through the e-Portal and other appropriate media channels.
Sixth - Discussion Conclusion and Archival:
After the decision announcement stage, the discussion topic considered to be officially closed, and all e-Participation documents, participations and transactions are archived. A full report on the participation and its stages are also prepared and archived.
This report contains, for example, but not limited to the following:
- Review and assessment of the primary situation and justification for the need of e-Participation.
- Discussion of opening documents.
- Ministry related communications in the participations collection stage.
- Detailed analysis of the participation process.
- Decisions and policies taken as a result from the participation process and the methodology and justifications considered for its development and adoption.
- Participation challenges and obstacles report, which includes recommendations for future work.