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Center for Technology in Government at UAlbany working with New York State to Bring Open NY to the Next Level

Community members and open government leaders at all levels convened at CTG to form a vision for Open NY's transparency hub.

ALBANY, NY (April 1, 2014) – With the goal of advancing the Open NY program to the next level, the Center for Technology in Government (CTG) at the University at Albany, in partnership with the State of New York, recently led a collaborative workshop, Shaping Open NY: Visioning a New Transparency Hub.

Open NY was initiated by Governor Andrew Cuomo in 2013 to create “unprecedented transparency across all levels of government.” The workshop took place during “Sunshine Week,” a national initiative to promote a dialogue about the importance of open government and freedom of information.

Sunshine Week, March 16-22, also coincided with CTG’s celebration of 20 years as a UAlbany research center. In 1993, CTG was charged by then New York Governor Mario Cuomo to “pursue new ways of applying technologies directly to the practical problems of information management and service delivery in the public sector.” CTG, now in partnership with Governor Andrew Cuomo and his open government team, continues to meet this charge by bringing cutting edge research and practice insights to the Open NY program.

“Understanding how value is created through the process of opening government and working with governments to develop the capabilities necessary to create that value is at the heart of CTG’s open government program,” said Theresa Pardo, director of CTG. “We are excited to use our 20 years of expertise to help improve the Open NY program by driving innovations in how information created by NYS governments is shared among government agencies and with researchers, citizens, businesses and the media.”

During the course of the event, CTG brought together community members and open government leaders at all levels to form a vision for Open NY's new transparency hub. The State will launch the new hub in the near future, implementing the best strategies culled from the workshop.

“Open NY is already one of the country's most recognized open government programs,” said Andrew Nicklin, Director, Open NY. “Under the leadership of CTG, the experts gathered at this workshop have identified new strategies to help the State of New York make it even better.”

Leaders from 24 public, private and non-profit organizations spent the day at CTG’s office in Albany participating in facilitated exercises and reflecting on the accomplishments of Open NY over the past year. An important message emerged: Open NY has a strong foundation, starting with the state’s leadership recognizing the value of opening data, Executive Order 95, its attention to metadata, and the growing demand for government data by civil society groups and private sector developers.

The group also provided feedback on the priorities for the upcoming year, which included:

  • Continuing to implement Executive Order 95,
  • Creating more engagement with stakeholders,
  • Building out the API capability,
  • Cross-referencing open data sites across the state,
  • Engaging municipalities as providers of data and as users,
  • Marketing the site to build awareness, and
  • Continuing to foster the State’s culture of openness.

In addition, strategies for continued engagement of and feedback from stakeholders will be incorporated into the process of developing the new hub.

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