11. Open Information Core Commitment


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Lead implementing department(s)
Library and Archives Canada
National Research Council Canada
Public Works and Government Services Canada
Treasury Board Secretariat
Open Information
Reporting period

Most of the deliverables for this commitment are on track to be completed by June 2016; however, several are behind schedule and may not be completed by the end of the current Action Plan (see details below).


Expand the proactive release of information on government activities, programs, policies, and services, making information easier to find, access, and use.

Results Next Steps Body Completion Level
  • 10 new institutions are now using the Access to Information and Privacy (ATIP) Online Request solution, including two departments with high levels of ATIP requests: Public Works and Government Services Canada and Employment and Social Development Canada. This brings the total number of participating institutions to 31.
  • Canadians now have access to a searchable database of completed Access to Information (ATI) requests that have been posted on open.canada.ca by institutions covered by the Directive on the Administration of the Access to Information Act. Through this service, requesters may also:
    • initiate informal requests online for the documents released in response to a selected ATI request; and
    • download all ATI summaries as a single, machine-readable dataset.
  • ATIP statistical reports are published on www.infosource.gc.ca and released as open data on open.canada.ca
  • Six new training modules have been developed to support government institutions in meeting their ATIP responsibilities.
    • The six modules focus on: “ATIP 101”, frequently-used exemptions, privacy basics, cabinet confidences, executive training in ATIP, and Privacy Impact Assessments.
    • TBS is collaborating with the Canada School of Public Service (CSPS) to integrate the information in the modules into CSPS ATIP training.
  • An initial feasibility study has been conducted related to the development of a whole-of-government ATIP solution.
  • Continue to work towards onboarding additional institutions to the Access to Information and Privacy (ATIP) Online Request service. (ongoing)
  • Continue to ensure the timely posting of Access to Information request summaries (ongoing).
  • Continue to support institutions with timely posting of ATIP statistical information on extensions and consultations related to access requests (ongoing).
  • Individual training modules are now available to the ATIP community.
    • Continue to work with the Canada School of Public Service on the development of training products.
  • Ready to move to development stage for the whole-of-government ATIP solution once resources are secured.

1. Modernize the administration of Access to Information and Privacy services across the federal government:

  • Expand online request-and-pay services
  • Provide searchable access to completed ATI requests
  • Publish statistics on extensions and consultations
  • Expand whole-of-government training strategy
  • Develop whole-of-government services and solutions
  • The Government of Canada’s new Open Information Portal has been launched and integrated into open.canada.ca.
    • The Portal consolidates and provides single-window, searchable access to over 170,000 digital information resources from the Government of Canada Publications collection (publications.gc.ca) and from Library & Archives Canada
    • All digital information resources available for free download via this service and are licenced under the Open Government Licence - Canada.
    • In May 2015, Canadian librarians and government information management experts were consulted on the planned direction for the Open Information Portal.
    • A common metadata profile for open data and open information has been developed and shared with data and information experts internal and external to the Government of Canada.
  • Implement Phase 2 of Canada’s Open Information Portal.
    • Design information and solutions architecture based on user discovery and integration with service delivery on Canada.ca.
    • Develop tools, training, and guidance materials for federal departments on using the portal to share their information.
    • Continue to broaden availability of information resources via the portal.

2. Develop and launch a virtual library on the new government-wide open government portal.

  • Complete public consultations to support development of the virtual library service.
  • Establish a government-wide system and web architecture for the release of government information assets via the virtual library.
  • Standardize release procedures, formats, and metadata for virtual library.
  • A readiness assessment survey has been completed to support the prioritization of the roll-out of GCDOCS to federal institutions and an onboarding plan has been developed and approved.
  • In addition, a suite of standardized tools and resources to ensure consistency of implementation across departments have been developed including:
    • IM Common Core (IMCC) configuration: mandatory configuration settings around Systems Rules, Metadata and Information Architecture
    • Common configuration of the Application Governance & Archiving (AGA) for Microsoft® SharePoint®to allow for a consistent approach for the use and implementation of collaboration software in alignment with GCDOCS.
  • Begin implementation for Wave 1 departments in early fall 2015 with subsequent waves onboarding in Winter 2016 and continuing through to Fall 2019 when it is expected that all target department and agencies will have migrated to the managed solution.

3. Improve the management and accessibility of government records, and facilitate faster responses to requests for information through the roll-out of GCDOCS, a government-wide records management solution for the federal government.

  • Library and Archives Canada (LAC) is continuing its systematic, risk-based review of blocks or series of government records in their permanent holdings.
    • Since July 2014, close to 6 million pages have been reviewed, and 4 million pages opened.
  • Furthermore, the new TBS Directive on Open Government includes requirements for removing access restrictions on departmental information resources of enduring prior to them being transferred to LAC as part of planned disposition activities.
  • Finally, in support of its Access Policy Framework, LAC is consulting with departments on draft directions for making the Government of Canada’s documentary heritage available to minimize legal and policy restrictions that impede access to federal holdings held by LAC.
  • Continue to identify and review LAC federal government holdings.
  • Complete consultations with departments and issue LAC Directive on Making the Government of Canada’s Documentary Heritage Available.

4. Increase Canadians' access to federal records by removing access restrictions on archived federal documents held by Library and Archives Canada.

  • An FSL implementation plan has been developed in support of a planned launch of the online FSL discovery portal.
  • National Research Council (NRC) to establish agreements with implicated science-based departments including Agriculture and Agri-food Canada, Natural Resources Canada, Health Canada.
  • Development and initial launch of online FSL discovery portal to be completed by December 2015.

5. Develop and pilot a single online discovery and access platform for federal science library (FSL) services and collections.

  • Planning discussions are underway to support enabling searchable access to federal laws and regulations via Canada.ca
  • Implement new regulatory information search capacity on Canada and complete migration of regulatory information (June 2016)

6. Provide consolidated, searchable access to regulatory information from federal departments and agencies involved in regulatory activities

  • Latest release of Canada.ca was launched in December 2014, improving access to Government of Canada information under 15 themes via a single, user-centric, government-wide website.
    • The Government of Canada’s most requested services and information have been placed front-and-centre on Canada.ca to facilitate quick and easy access for users.
    • Contract awarded for hosted, whole-of-government Web Management Services solution.
    • Over 30% of Canada.ca traffic originates from mobile devices.
    • The results of usability testing of Canada.ca with a team of 3,400 Canadians have resulted in key site enhancements, including a few changes to the themes that help users navigate the site.
    • Canadians can stay updated on recent progress and developments via the "In The Loop" blog on Canada.ca.
  • Continue improvements to Canada.ca:
    • Complete internal configuration of new hosted platform (Completed)
    • Migrate Canada.ca to hosted platform (Feb 2016)
    • Additional content and pages to be added by Feb 2016 (2 new themes to be added)

7. Access to all online Government of Canada information and services improved through the new whole-of-government Canada.ca website:

  • Intuitive user-centric design based on government-wide web standards;
  • Whole-of-government search functionality;
  • Faster access to frequently used services and information

Supports the principles of transparency and accountability, and is targeted at helping address the OGP Grand Challenges of improving public services, increasing public integrity, and effectively managing public resources by implementing solutions to improve Canadians’ access to government data and information.


The Open Information Core Commitment supports ambitious, whole-of-government change in a number of ways including:

  • transforming the administration of Access to Information government-wide and facilitating efficient and effective responses to requests for federal data and information;
  • enhancing departments’ capacity to respond quickly to requests for information by improving the enterprise-wide management of federal government records and removing access restrictions to federal archives; and
  • providing Canadians with centralized, searchable access to government publications, laws/regulations, and other Government of Canada information and services via common government-wide portals and platforms.
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