open government

The Department of Labor has emerged as a leader in transforming crucial information buried in online PDF files or impenetrable government websites into new applications that widely distribute government data. Keep reading →

After six days of the 2012 International Open Government Data Conference, which concluded last week, I and others are asking ourselves this question: Is there a business case for open government data?

Clearly, more needs to be done to spread what is working with open government data.

But when it comes to making a business case for open government data, there are at least three success models – or examples I am aware of:

  • Statistical agencies that get regular funding because it is critical to governmental decisions such as establishing congressional districts;
  • Intelligence agencies and the larger intelligence community that received a big budget increase for big data because of the need to find more needles in bigger haystacks;
  • Google, Facebook, LinkedIn, and other big data users of online data that learned they needed a data science team with an information platform to grow their businesses.
But the question remains, what business value can make open government data fundable and sustainable like the above three? Keep reading →

This headline above – from a Commerce Department apps challenge hosted on – attracted my attention. So I decided to take the challenge to develop apps using the 2010 Census Summary File 1 and the American Community Survey (five-year data). Keep reading →

Chris Vein works for two prominent Obama administration officials who are always in the limelight. Consequently Vein doesn’t get a lot of publicity. If you do a search on his name, the “news” results shows very little.

And that’s all fine with Vein, the deputy Chief Technology Officer. He reports to the chief technology officer (the post Aneesh Chopra held before stepping down earlier this month) and also to John Holdren, the senior advisor to the president for Science and Technology. Both have been highly visible – and in Holdren’s case, controversial – appointees.
This article originally appeared on
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The Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board’s new leader took the reins just a few weeks ago, but has already moved full speed ahead using cutting edge strategies for tracking federal spending, increasing government transparency and doggedly pursuing fraud detection and mismanagement.

Kathleen Tighe, who took over as board chair of the young agency Jan. 1 after Earl Devaney’s retirement, brings her experience in government accountability as Inspector General for the Education Department to the task of overseeing $840 billion in stimulus funds unleashed in 2009. Keep reading →

I recently was involved in a discussion debating the successes of Open Government.

Some of the individuals in the discussion felt the success of the Open Government initiative was the creation of, but I disagreed saying that it was only a data catalog and even the featured data sets are difficult to use and understand.

We really need data apps and data stories from those that the public and decision-makers could use to justify funding and claim success.

The 25 most popular apps at were mostly XML feeds and only 5 were Excel that I could easily make into data apps. Keep reading →

In this column, which originally appeared at, Earl E. Devaney provides his outlook for the future in the weeks prior to his retirement Dec. 31. The final installment in a series of columns he wrote on the lessons he has learned from his work on the Recovery Board was published in November. The column originally appeared at

In a few days, my 41-year career in government ends. Through this column, the Recovery Board has given me a platform from which to address the need for more transparency and accountability in government, an issue of great importance to all Americans. In this farewell column, I am providing a status report on our work and what might lie ahead. Keep reading →

The White House has unveiled a new government web site section designed to help accelerate the environmental review and permitting process for 14 high priority infrastructure projects.

The new Federal Infrastructure Projects Dashboard is also intended to bring greater public attention to the projects, and the promise of jobs associated with them, said Jeff Zients, deputy director for management and chief performance officer at the White House Office of Management and Budget in a blog post yesterday. Keep reading →

The government has already tapped hidden pockets of innovation throughout the country to solve its greatest problems and can continue to do so through the open government movement, Aneesh Chopra said today at a conference on federal technology and innovation.

“This is an exciting time to be an innovator in America,” the U.S. Chief Technology Officer said during his presentation at Warner Theater in Washington, D.C. “There is now a global movement afoot. It’s about tapping into the entrepreneurial spirit of our people to solve the challenges of our day.” Keep reading →

The Bush Administration had its Results.Gov scorecard. The Obama Administration now has unveiled its Performance.Gov dashboard.

Is a dashboard better than a scorecard? Keep reading →