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Opening Government
Summary
The Obama administration’s release of the Open Government Directive in late 2009 launched efforts across executive branch agencies to enhance transparency, participation, and collaboration. The agencies responded with open government plans that outline specific initiatives to comply with the Directive. The plans serve as roadmaps showing how agencies can advance the key principles of transparency, participation, and collaboration through new or enhanced programs and services. The results of the Directive at the federal level have been matched by expanded open government activities in many state and local governments.

These expanded open government initiatives have not been matched, however, by an expanded capability to assess their impact or overall value. The stated goal of these programs and policies is the pursuit of transparency, participation, and collaboration, ideas that resonate in familiar and positive ways. Without further elaboration and framing, however, these ideas do not provide a basis to compare alternative initiatives, to say how they have opened government, or how much public value they may produce. There has been little attention to what actions and programs count as transparent, participative, or collaborative, and from whose perspective such judgments should be evaluated.

Through a series of initiatives, CTG considers open government from multiple perspectives, within the context of the academic field of e-government, and in a broader context in public administration. Delving into questions such as- What does it mean for government to be “open” and what are the means by which information available to citizens will be both useful and accessible? How should leaders administer agencies within the executive branch facilitate openness and how is that best assessed?
 
Open Government Initiatives
Public Value Assessment Tool
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CTG’s Open Government Portfolio Public Value Assessment Tool (PVAT) provide government decision makers an approach for making more informed decisions about their agency’s open government investments. The PVAT provides a framework for governments to assess the public value of each of their initiatives and a set of steps for making comparisons about likely impact across a portfolio of initiatives. More>>
Issue Brief on Public Value
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Delivering Public Value Through Open Government expands on CTG's public value approach, which is targeted at filling the gap in the ability of open government innovators to measure the full impact of their efforts by focusing attention on the collective and societal interests that are served by open government initiatives.
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CTG Open Government Video
 
In June 2011, CTG partnered with SobelMedia to sponsor, A Dialogue on Opening Government Through Technology: Can Open Data Drive Innovation? at Internet Week in New York City. For the event, CTG presented a short video on open government.
Open Government R&D Agenda
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In March of 2011 Aneesh Chopra, the U.S. Chief Technology Officer outlined the need for an open government research and development agenda. He called on academic centers to work with their partners to develop recommendations about the key research and development issues, questions, and opportunities that must recognized and addressed be as we move forward in the process of opening government. As part of this nationwide effort, CTG partnered with the Tetherless World Constellation (TWC) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, the Institute for Information Law and Policy at New York Law, and Civic Commons to host a two-day workshop specifically focused on questions about the use of government data to improve the lives of everyday citizens. More>>
Contributing to the Global Conversation on Opening Government
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CTG’s long experience in the research and practice of technology innovation in government provide a unique backdrop for our view on the challenges of and opportunities presented by open government. CTG researchers have shared this unique perspective around the world as invited speakers, accepted authors, and workshop conveners.
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