Tuesday 6 April 2010

Open Government plans audit, welcomes assistance

In his committment to creating an "unprecedented level of openness in Government" in order to "strengthen our democracy and promote efficiency and effectiveness in Government", President Obama's administration issued an Open Government Directive requiring Federal agencies to take several steps to build transparency into the way they operate. One of the key requirements of the Open Government Directive is for agencies to develop and publish Open Government Plans by April 7th, 2010. These plans are meant to provide the public with information about how agencies intend to create a lasting culture of openness.
Open the Government dot Org, a coalition of journalists, consumer groups, environmentalists, library groups (including the AALL and ALA), and others is arranging an audit of these Open Government Plans with the goal of having each plan evaluated by April 16. The audit will evaluate the agency Plans and grade them on whether they live up to both the letter and the spirit of the Directive. Several organizations have volunteered to evaluate plans, but anyone interested in how an agency is doing, and willing to help by filling out an evaluation form, can email info@openthgovernment.org with information about what federal agency you would like to grade, and a little bit about your involvement with the agency.
The public can view these evaluations, comment on any part of the plans they think are impressive, and make concrete suggestions on how the agency could improve its plan on the Evaluating Open Government Site.

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