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Official Calls Open Government Obama’s 'Signature Governance Initiative'

President Obama’s “signature governance initiative” is the Open Government Partnership, according to Samantha Powers, special assistant and senior director for multilateral affairs and human rights in the White House. Powers was speaking at the opening of OpenGov Hub, a new collaborative space for nonprofits working on government transparency, civic engagement, and accountability.

In her speech at the opening celebration, Powers made some interesting points about the concrete, granular benefits of strong open government policies.

It’s not about the abstraction about ‘fighting corruption’ or ‘promoting transparency’ or ‘harnessing innovation’ — it’s about ‘are the kids getting the textbooks they’re supposed to get’ or does transparency provide a window into whether resources are going where they’re supposed to go and, to the degree to which that window exists, are citizens aware and benefiting from the data and that information such that they can hold their governments accountable. And then, does the government care that citizens care that those discrepancies exist?

See the full video of her speech below or head over to Gov 2.0 for the transcript. 

Video by Alex Howard

By: Andre Francisco
Online Producer, POGO

andre francisco Andre Francisco is the Online Producer for the Project On Government Oversight.

Topics: Open Government

Related Content: Information Access, Open Government

Authors: Andre Francisco

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