How Federal Agencies Can Implement and Benefit From Transparency

Tom Moritz | | October 31, 2011

Open source, specifically, has an important part to play in the open government movement. Open source software is, by definition, transparent. It is developed by a democratic community of users and shared in an egalitarian way. Moreover, when budgetary constraints are imposing severe limits on government's ability to adapt to a dynamically changing technical environment, open source software minimizes the transaction costs associated with adaptation and use.

Some of key legal, technical, and budgetary challenges are outlined in Chapter 4, "Constraints on Transparency." In the interest of transparency (and disclosure), I authored Chapter 4 as a volunteer.

In the private sector, transparency focuses on disclosures of information and data essential to the informed evaluation of the performance of for-profit corporations and not-for-profit organizations. In the public sector, open government seeks to improve the transparency of government operations so that both the government and the public can make well-informed judgments about the relative efficiency and effectiveness of government, about the success of government programs in meeting their intended missions...