The White House has issued a new Executive Order, making open and machine readable the new default for government information and a memo, Open Data Policy — Managing information as an asset. These documents provide a new set of guidelines for government agencies that will help to ensure a more open and accessible government. “This Memorandum establishes a framework to help institutionalize the principles of effective information management at each stage of the information’s life cycle to promote interoperability and openness.”
The EO specifies that within 90 days the government will “identify and initiate implementation of measures to support the integration of the Open Data Policy” and a new Cross-Agency Priority Goal will be created to track the progress of agencies as they implement the new policy.
This is another positive step in creating a more open and transparent government and will as a result help to inform the American public. As the memo states “making information resources accessible, discoverable, and usable by the public can help fuel entrepreneurship, innovation, and scientific discovery — all of which improve Americans’ lives and contribute significantly to job creation”.