Fall 2014 has turned out to be an exceptionally important and busy season for open government in Canada: we finalized Canada’s Action Plan on Open Government 2.0, issued the Open Government Directive, and re-launched Canada’s Open Government Portal, at open.canada.ca.
Here are some of the highlights:
Canada’s Action Plan on Open Government 2.0
Canada’s Action Plan on Open Government 2.0captures our commitments as a government to advancing an agenda of openness, accountability, transparency, and engagement with Canadians over the next two years. Based on months of consultation and engagement with Canadians, these commitments include working to create a “no-wrong-door approach” across all levels of government in Canada.
Other commitments aim to establish common standards and principles for open data, and launching the Canadian Open Data Exchange to support Canada’s commercial open data ecosystem. By making federally funded science publications and data more available and searchable we’ll encourage greater collaboration and engagement with the scientific community, the private sector, and the public.
I encourage you to read our new action plan and to share your thoughts on it.
Directive on Open Government
On October 9, 2014, the Directive on Open Government came into effect, which is foundational to the Government of Canada’s transparency and accountability goals. It captures—and makes official—the cultural shift taking place within the Government of Canada towards being “open by default.” The new policy now makes releasing open data and information a mandatory activity for federal departments and agencies, and will help push open government even further.
New Open Government Portal
As we release more data and information, we’re also ensuring that those resources are easier to find and use. An important step was to move to canada.ca—a simple, single link between Canadians and their government. Today, we re-launched the Open Government Portal at its new home, open.canada.ca.
Based on your input, we’ve been improving the portal steadily—more data, better search, easier navigation, and interactive discussions about open government—and today’s upgrade represents another step forward:
- All contracts over $10,000 awarded and proactively disclosed by the Government of Canada, once dispersed across departmental websites, are now searchable from the Open Government Portal.
- The new Communities,interactive spaces organized by interest areas, help find and connect people around data and information.
- Open Government Across Canada highlights related programs and events across geography and jurisdictions in Canada making it easier for Canadians to stay up-to-date on open government activities across the country and to find the data they are looking for.
Please keep sharing your thoughts with us. Let us know what is working, what isn’t working, and what other improvements you would like to see at open.canada.ca.
We will continue to add new features and content. We look forward to seeing how you use the growing data and information resources that are continuously being released on the Open Government Portal, and we welcome your comments and suggestions.
Lead, Open Government