Thursday, May 21, 2009
Crafting Open-Government Recommendations
The White House has launched a new process for soliciting public input in the policy-making process. This three-phase structured process runs as follows:
1. Brainstorming: Starting today, citizens will be able to submit and rank ideas regarding how the government should become more transparent, participatory and collaborative.
2. Blog Discussion: Starting June 3, citizens and federal employees will discuss some of the top issues raised during the brainstorming session. For example, how can privacy and security be protected as government data is made available?
3. Wiki-based Draft: Starting June 15, the public can help craft the language of recommendations on open government. These formal recommendations will become the framework for how the open-government directive will be implemented.
An online platform to access non-sensitive federal government data so Web developers can create new applications to help citizens sort and analyze public data.
Regulations.gov was created in 2003 to let citizens search for and comment on federal regulations. Today the site has been revamped so the public can post opinions about the regulations directly to the site.
Part of WhiteHouse.gov, the gallery will be a place for agencies and departments to show their own efforts to be more transparent and collaborative with the public. Some of the examples listed on the gallery: Department of Homeland Security's IdeaFactory, which lets employees of the Transportation Security Administration submit ideas to make the transportation system more secure; Department of Defense's DoDTechipedia, which allows government workers and civilians share ideas about new technology.
Obama is encouraging Cabinet secretaries to adopt more open-government innovations over the next year. These efforts will be added to the gallery over time.
Lists transparency benchmarks reached by the administration, including the U.S. Attorney General's order for agencies to more readily respond to requests for records under the Freedom of Information Act.