Open Government Plan Launches Today

At 11am, the Obama Adminisitration’s in house senior techies—Aneesh Chopra, the Chief Technology Officer, and Vivek Kundra, the Chief Information Officer—will be presenting the administration’s Open Government Plan. Today’s announcement brings to life Obama’s charge, given on his first full day in office, to his staff to craft a directive that will harness technology to foster ‘transparency, public participation, and collaboration” in government.

The team working on the directive have already been involved with some interesting projects, like launching a federal IT spending dashboard, receiving comment on the President’s classification policy, and creating the information portal

You can live stream the event—and participate in a chat, of course—at the White House’s website. The Personal Democracy Forum, mavens of all things gov-tech, will be live blogging at their site.

UPDATE: Here’s a link to a pdf version of the Directive. Not surprisingly, it’s made up of mostly forward looking proscriptions. Agencies will have to make three “high value” data sets available online within 45 days—and they’d better step to it: just two weeks later, the White House will launch it’s own online dashboard to track the agencies’ progress. By that date, each agency is also required to host its own open government website, which will eventually feature the agency’s own open government plan and tools to solicit public input. There are further goals for various Office of Management and Budget overseers to issue further guidance on open government, to set up senior level working groups and the like. In short, there are plently of deadlines for the press and the transparency community to watchdog as the plan gets put into action.

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Clint Hendler is the managing editor of Mother Jones, and a former deputy editor of CJR.