Open by Default Pilot


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The Open by Default pilot is your backstage pass to the work of four government departments: Canadian Heritage, Environment and Climate Change Canada, Natural Resources Canada and Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat. The goal is to give you a snapshot of Government of Canada documents as they’re being created. The Government of Canada works for Canadians, so we believe you should know what we’re doing behind-the-scenes.

The Open by Default Pilot provides access to working documents used by the Government of Canada. Most of this information is unpublished and may include errors or omissions. Many documents will be in draft form, are generally available in the language in which they were created, and may not be fully accessible. Unless otherwise indicated, information is made available under the Open Government Licence. To obtain documents in the official language of your choice, or in an accessible format, please contact us.

Explore Open by Default documents

Search and browse working documents provided by the Government of Canada.

About the Open by Default pilot project

Learn more about the Open by Default pilot.

Contact Us

Your feedback is critical to creating a more open Canada. We want to know how we can serve you better. Please contact us and share your thoughts on how we can improve Open by Default.

Opening up government through Open by Default - Transcript

Alex Benay: Hi. My name is Alex Benay. I’m the Chief Information Officer for the Government of Canada. Open government as far as I’m concerned is the future of government especially in the Government of Canada. I think we’ve got an unbelievable opportunity to turn the government into a platform more people can engage with. In order to do that, we have to put more and more of our content online by default.

Ultimately for me, open by default or open government is about reducing the barriers to access to government. I think the days of the silent public servant need to come to an end. We need to engage with the communities around us more and regardless of what sector that they’re in.

The government right now to promote open government, we’re launching a pilot project that is open by default. So the platform in itself is just the beginning. We live in an age where there is an interconnected society and we need to start leveraging the benefits and the power of the masses.

The tools are available and at our disposal to be able to engage in this kind of conversation. You can check out the open by default portal for yourself on

Government of Canada’s Open by Default pilot - Transcript

The Government of Canada is changing how it interacts with the public.

With several levels of approvals, sharing information with the public has been a challenging process, creating barriers when developing new policies, programs, and services.

How then, can the Government of Canada deliver on its commitment to be open and transparent?

Right now we’re testing an Open by Default pilot that gives the public a behind-the-scenes look at the federal government’s work as its being created.

With the push of a button, public servants will be able to share working documents on, facilitating co-development of policies, civic engagement, and more impactful science.

Imagine, a government that:

  1. works in the open
  2. shares information as it is created
  3. increasingly collaborates with the public

That, is Open by Default.

What's new in open government?