The Race to the Top for Openness and Innovation: Announcing Agency Open Government Plan Leading Practices

Four months ago, all cabinet departments demonstrated their commitment to building a government that is more transparent, participatory, and collaborative through the publication of detailed open government plans. (See, for example HHS or DOT’s posts about their plans) To hold the departments accountable, we published an online dashboard that assessed agency Open Government plans against the requirements of the Open Government Directive. We found that agencies were off to a good start. At the same time, we concluded that much more work was necessary to ensure effective implementation of these ambitious plans to make operations and data more transparent and expand opportunities for citizen participation, collaboration, and oversight.

With your feedback, members of the Open Government community--within and outside the government--have been working together to improve the Open Government plans. Today, we update our Open Government Dashboard to reflect this progress.

A total of 18 agencies are “all green,” which means that they have crafted plans that meet every requirement under the Directive. Moreover, agencies that are still yellow have made significant progress in revising and improving their plans.

Today, we also announce the recipients of The Leading Practices Awards for achievement above and beyond the requirements of the Directive. These Awards recognize those agencies, as selected by their peers, that have outlined the best and most innovative strategies for promoting open government over the next two years. There are four categories of awards corresponding to each of the major goals of the Open Government agenda:

  • Leadership, Governance, and Culture Change
  • Transparency
  • Participation and Collaboration
  • Flagship Initiative

Awards were determined on the basis of evaluation of the plans against the definition of “Leading Practice” by the agencies themselves. Leading Practices are meant to inspire a “race to the top” among government agencies for greater openness and innovation. These awards represent the very best of the best in Open Government Plans -- exemplary of the high levels of creativity and innovation that can be found in the open government activities of our Federal agencies today. The awardees in the four categories are as follows:

Leadership, Governance, and Culture Change


Participation and Collaboration

Flagship Initiative

Open Government is an evolving and continuing responsibility for this Administration. Much has been accomplished in the recent past. Click here to view some of the highlights.

Aneesh Chopra is U.S. Chief Technology Officer
Cass R. Sunstein is Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs

Your Federal Tax Receipt