Open Data

How Many Staff Members Does It Take To Create Open Data

Here’s what I imagine your checklist looks like for financial transparency: Outline the city’s priorities? Check. Create a narrative, visualization tool for open data? Check. (Or read how-to here.) Generate citizen buy-in? Check. Hire the appropriate amount of staff? …Maybe. In last week’s online training, “How Kansas City Engaged Citizens with Open Data,” live audienceRead… Read more »

How Feds Implement the Nation’s First Open Data Law Is Key

It’s one thing for Congress to pass what has been dubbed the nation’s first open data law. It’s another thing for agencies to have the necessary resources to implement that law, along with the backing from senior leadership to fully embrace it. “How you implement legislation, how you follow through, is every bit as important,Read… Read more »

Here’s Why the DATA Act Is a Big Deal

Tracking federal spending is not for the faint of heart. For starters, the system doesn’t cater to curious citizens or concerned feds, who want to track spending from appropriations in Congress to contract and grant awards. Part of the problem is different agencies use different systems to compile data, and there isn’t a consistent wayRead… Read more »

Hacking for Good, One Community at a Time

On June 6, 2015 thousands of people from 106 communities took part in the National Day of Civic Hacking. Organized by Code for America, the annual event helps people come together and collaborate to make their communities stronger. The locally organized events welcome more than just those who crunch code. Around the country, organizers engaged people of all backgrounds, including tech experts, government employees, students, entrepreneurs,Read… Read more »

How to Drill Down Government Finances

Incase you missed last week’s online training, Full Disclosure: How Governments Can Best Display Financial Transparency to the Public, here’s a quick tip sheet based on the City of Chattanooga’s Open Budget App and how government finances is giving meaning to the trend of open data. But first, what is financial transparency? According to Socrata’sRead… Read more »

Five Tips for The Trip (Downtown) to Government Finances

In yesterday’s online training, “Full Disclosure: How Governments Can Best Display Financial Transparency to the Public,” audience members visited the City of Chattanooga – virtually of course – to get a glimpse into the City’s brand new Open Budget Application – launched only three days ago as a subset of their already welcomed Open DataRead… Read more »

The Evolution of Government Financial Transparency

You’ve probably heard something about the DATA Act, the first U.S. open data law that requires all federal agencies to standardize and publish their spending reports. However, do you know how that Act came about? More importantly, do you know how and when it will be achieved? Below we offer a brief timeline to offerRead… Read more »

Spending Data: Boring Or A Bureaucracy No-Brainer?

Why government transparency? We talk a lot about transparency, but what do citizens really want to know about all of the extraneous government information they’ve got floating around? The most obvious answer is that people want to know that the hard-earned money they fork over each year on taxes is put to good use. LikeRead… Read more »

Thoughts from New Zealand: Does Open Source Lead to Open Society?

The set up Last week I want to a conference called Open Source // Open Society (OS//OS). While conferences are great opportunities to learn new things, I normally wouldn’t blog about one. But this one got me thinking about the ‘open society’ aspect and how it fits with government, especially with the work my team isRead… Read more »