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U.S. Commits, Yet Again, to Modernizing Administration of Freedom of Information Act

BY Alex Howard | Thursday, October 31 2013

Pictured is, from left to right, Rageh Omaar, ITV News; Tanzanian Pres. Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete; and Rakesh Rajani (Alex Howard)

As part of its participation in the international Open Government Partnership (OGP), which is now holding its annual summit this week in London, the United States government is committing to further open government data, improve its management of natural resources, engage citizens in innovation and, perhaps most significantly, modernize the administration of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). That last item is most important. The United States has had a FOIA law since 1966, and it was expanded after the Watergate scandals. It's a critical tool for the press to hold government accountable. Compliance with FOIA, however, has long been a mixed bag. Alex Howard reports from London. Read More

Developers Are Already Submitting Patches to Obama's New Open Data Policy

BY Nick Judd | Thursday, May 9 2013

Photo: Tom Lohdan / Flickr

The White House on Thursday morning released an executive order from President Barack Obama that mandates any data in information systems created by government agencies going forward be available for anyone to access, download, and use. Read More

How Congress Could Claim More of the Open Government Pie

BY Nancy Scola | Wednesday, February 16 2011

Photo by Jonathon D. Colman Read More

Tax Cut Extensions: Obama Presser Bumps Today's W.H. Open Gov't Chat

BY Nancy Scola | Tuesday, December 7 2010

Sacrifices were made when it comes to President Obama's agreement with Republicans over extending tax cuts, and that includes the White House's open government chat that was supposed to take place this afternoon. Read More

The Open Government Directive Turns One

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, December 6 2010

A year ago tomorrow, the Obama White House issued a directive calling on the federal government to be more transparent, more participatory, and more collaborative. How are things going with the Open Government Directive ... Read More

Open Data at the Golden Gate, But Transparency? Maybe Not Yet

BY Nick Judd | Friday, November 19 2010

San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom signs open data legislation into law. Photo: Courtesy Gavin Newsom / twitpic San Francisco, Ca., made the news last week when its board of supervisors passed an open-data law, one-upping ... Read More

Building One Contest Platform for a Diverse Government

BY Nancy Scola | Friday, June 11 2010

First Lady Michelle Obama's Apps for Health Kids is already running on ChallengePost, the platform that will be used as a executiveb branch-wide competition platform. Read More

Open Govt: Does the Govt Know What the Govt Knows?

BY Micah L. Sifry | Wednesday, April 7 2010

At first glance, yesterday was a big day for open government in Washington, DC. Responding to the White House's Open Government Directive of last December, 29 departments and agencies published detailed plans describing ... Read More

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NYC Open Data Advocates Focus on Quality And Value Over Quantity

The New York City Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications plans to publish more than double the amount of datasets this year than it published to the portal last year, new Commissioner Anne Roest wrote last week in an annual report mandated by the city's open data law, with 135 datasets scheduled to be released this year, and almost 100 more to come in 2015. But as preparations are underway for City Council open data oversight hearings in the fall, what matters more to advocates than the absolute number of the datasets is their quality. GO

Civic Tech and Engagement: Announcing a New Series on What Makes it "Thick"

Announcing a new series of feature articles that we will be publishing over the next several months, thanks to the support of the Rita Allen Foundation. Our focus is on digitally-enabled civic engagement, and in particular, how and under what conditions "thick" digital civic engagement occurs. What we're after is answers to this question: When does a tech tool or platform enable actual people to make ongoing and significant contributions to each other, to a place or cause, at a scale that produces demonstrable change? GO

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