Open Government Dialogue: More greatest hits

Here is a selection of some of the latest ideas to surface during the second phase of the Obama administration's Open Government Dialogue.

Here is a selection of some of the latest ideas to surface during the second phase of the Open Government Dialogue, the Obama administration’s online initiative seeking to improve the transparency of government operations and information. To find links to these items, visit www.fcw.com/pointers.

Improving online public participation in agency rule-making

Question: How can the administration better engage members of the public in the rule-making process, beyond what is already done through Regulations.gov?

I think one of the real shortcomings in a lot of efforts by agencies to engage the public is a failure to put adequate resources behind outreach to ensure diverse participation. Putting up an online space for public input doesn’t do much good if people don’t know about it. It is even worse when only certain groups know about it. If I’ve learned anything in the past decade of my leading public engagement efforts, it is that quality participation requires diverse participation — and diverse participation requires real outreach. Active efforts must be made to reach out to all of the different constituencies who care about a given issue.

— Joe Goldman

Strengthening civic participation

Question: What is the appropriate and most effective role for the government to play in fostering greater civic participation?

Response: The most useful approach that a governmental body, at any level, can take to seriously encourage public participation is to set clear expectations — for themselves and the public. For example, what kind of information or input do they hope the public can provide? And, at what point in the decision-making process can it be provided? Valuable public input can be obtained in one or more of the following situations: crystallizing the components of a problem to be addressed, brainstorming to identify useful and politically acceptable solutions, and refining implementation plans. Public input is also useful to evaluate or check customer satisfaction with new or ongoing government programs or operations.

— Kelly McFarland Stratman

Transparency: Access to information

Question: How should the administration improve information policies specifically related to the Freedom of Information Act and OMB Circular A-130, which covers the management of information resources?

Response: I was an adviser to the National Academy of Public Administration on the brainstorming part of the dialogue and one of my chief concerns was the lack of context for that brainstorm. Participants in the discussion of collaboration had no way to know about the current level of collaboration within and among levels of government so there was no threshold shared understanding from which to launch their input. And it showed in the less than helpful level of discussion. There’s an argument to be made that participatory government is meaningless if the participants lack a context for their participation — background material organized and presented cogently and clearly so everyone starts from a position of shared information. Without that, people are left with nothing on which to target their input.

— Anne Laurent

New technologies and participation

Question: What are the tools and techniques for democratizing access to government data?

Response: We need the best and brightest visual interface programmers to put their heads together and build an online virtual space where every nuance of public governmental activity — video, audio, text, live, archive — is accessible in near real time to include records of votes and why legislatures voted the way they did. It can and should be 3-D, much like first-person games are developed today. In fact, these same game developers can be contracted to develop this system of interactivity and interoperability.

— Dennis Sirois

X
This website uses cookies to enhance user experience and to analyze performance and traffic on our website. We also share information about your use of our site with our social media, advertising and analytics partners. Learn More / Do Not Sell My Personal Information
Accept Cookies
X
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Do Not Sell My Personal Information

When you visit our website, we store cookies on your browser to collect information. The information collected might relate to you, your preferences or your device, and is mostly used to make the site work as you expect it to and to provide a more personalized web experience. However, you can choose not to allow certain types of cookies, which may impact your experience of the site and the services we are able to offer. Click on the different category headings to find out more and change our default settings according to your preference. You cannot opt-out of our First Party Strictly Necessary Cookies as they are deployed in order to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting the cookie banner and remembering your settings, to log into your account, to redirect you when you log out, etc.). For more information about the First and Third Party Cookies used please follow this link.

Allow All Cookies

Manage Consent Preferences

Strictly Necessary Cookies - Always Active

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data, Targeting & Social Media Cookies

Under the California Consumer Privacy Act, you have the right to opt-out of the sale of your personal information to third parties. These cookies collect information for analytics and to personalize your experience with targeted ads. You may exercise your right to opt out of the sale of personal information by using this toggle switch. If you opt out we will not be able to offer you personalised ads and will not hand over your personal information to any third parties. Additionally, you may contact our legal department for further clarification about your rights as a California consumer by using this Exercise My Rights link

If you have enabled privacy controls on your browser (such as a plugin), we have to take that as a valid request to opt-out. Therefore we would not be able to track your activity through the web. This may affect our ability to personalize ads according to your preferences.

Targeting cookies may be set through our site by our advertising partners. They may be used by those companies to build a profile of your interests and show you relevant adverts on other sites. They do not store directly personal information, but are based on uniquely identifying your browser and internet device. If you do not allow these cookies, you will experience less targeted advertising.

Social media cookies are set by a range of social media services that we have added to the site to enable you to share our content with your friends and networks. They are capable of tracking your browser across other sites and building up a profile of your interests. This may impact the content and messages you see on other websites you visit. If you do not allow these cookies you may not be able to use or see these sharing tools.

If you want to opt out of all of our lead reports and lists, please submit a privacy request at our Do Not Sell page.

Save Settings
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Cookie List

A cookie is a small piece of data (text file) that a website – when visited by a user – asks your browser to store on your device in order to remember information about you, such as your language preference or login information. Those cookies are set by us and called first-party cookies. We also use third-party cookies – which are cookies from a domain different than the domain of the website you are visiting – for our advertising and marketing efforts. More specifically, we use cookies and other tracking technologies for the following purposes:

Strictly Necessary Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Functional Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Performance Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Social Media Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Targeting Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.