White House open government directive arrives today

CTO Aneesh Chopra and CIO Vivek Kundra are scheduled to announce directive during an 11 a.m. Web chat

The long-awaited open government directive for federal agencies is scheduled to be announced today during an 11 a.m. Web chat hosted by federal Chief Technology Officer Aneesh Chopra and federal Chief Information Officer Vivek Kundra, according to a White House announcement.

The public is invited to watch the announcement and pose questions to the two technology leaders, the White House said. Making additional suggestions about the open government plan will also be encouraged.

The primary goal of the policy is to increase the transparency and accountability of federal agencies, and to ensure greater access and information for the public, according to the White House.

On his first full day in office, President Barack Obama laid out his administration’s goals for open government and requested that recommendations be drafted by May 21.

White House officials got input from the public about the open government policy during a three-phase brainstorming, discussion and drafting process. The brainstorming phase ran from May 21 to May 28 and brought in more than 900 ideas and 33,000 votes, according to the White House.

The discussion phase ran from June 3 to June 21 and attracted more than 1,000 comments in response to 16 topics. The final drafting phase ran from June 22 to July 6 and resulted in 305 drafts by 375 authors, with 2,256 of people voting on those drafts.

During the drafting phase the public recommended definitions the federal government should use for what it means to be transparent. There were also recommendations on how to become transparent under the definitions.

For example, the ninth most popular draft suggestion, as voted on by the public, recommended that the central tenet of the policy should be to actively provide information to the public rather than merely making information available. The draft suggestion said the Data.gov Web site is a good start, but it is “sparse and largely uninteresting to the general citizen.”

“The transparency initiative should be a journalistic effort on the part of the government to aggregate all the daily 'news' for its citizens that is in the public domain and publish it (categorized by Agency and tagged with keywords) on a Web site that citizens can easily access, read and follow,” the suggestion states.

About the Author

Doug Beizer is a staff writer for Federal Computer Week.

The Fed 100

Save the date for 28th annual Federal 100 Awards Gala.

Featured

  • computer network

    How Einstein changes the way government does business

    The Department of Commerce is revising its confidentiality agreement for statistical data survey respondents to reflect the fact that the Department of Homeland Security could see some of that data if it is captured by the Einstein system.

  • Defense Secretary Jim Mattis. Army photo by Monica King. Jan. 26, 2017.

    Mattis mulls consolidation in IT, cyber

    In a Feb. 17 memo, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis told senior leadership to establish teams to look for duplication across the armed services in business operations, including in IT and cybersecurity.

  • Image from Shutterstock.com

    DHS vague on rules for election aid, say states

    State election officials had more questions than answers after a Department of Homeland Security presentation on the designation of election systems as critical U.S. infrastructure.

  • Org Chart Stock Art - Shutterstock

    How the hiring freeze targets millennials

    The government desperately needs younger talent to replace an aging workforce, and experts say that a freeze on hiring doesn't help.

  • Shutterstock image: healthcare digital interface.

    VA moves ahead with homegrown scheduling IT

    The Department of Veterans Affairs will test an internally developed scheduling module at primary care sites nationwide to see if it's ready to service the entire agency.

  • Shutterstock images (honglouwawa & 0beron): Bitcoin image overlay replaced with a dollar sign on a hardware circuit.

    MGT Act poised for a comeback

    After missing in the last Congress, drafters of a bill to encourage cloud adoption are looking for a new plan.

Reader comments

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above

More from 1105 Public Sector Media Group