Today President Obama signed an Executive Order directing federal agencies to make government data more accessible to the public. Under the terms of the Executive Order, “Making Open and Machine Readable the New Default for Government Information,” a new Open Data Policy (PDF) released today establishes a framework to help agencies implement the principles of effective information management throughout the data life cycle to promote interoperability and openness. Whether or not particular information can be made public, agencies can apply this framework to all information resources to promote efficiency and produce value.
The new Open Data Policy requires agencies to collect or create information in a way that supports downstream information processing and dissemination activities. This includes using machine-readable and open formats, data standards, and common core and extensible metadata for all new information creation and collection efforts. It also includes ensuring information stewardship through the use of open licenses and review of information for privacy, confidentiality, security, or other restrictions to release.
For more details, see the May 9, 2013, White House Blog entry by Todd Park and Steve VanRoekel, “Landmark Steps to Liberate Open Data” or watch this two-minute video about the Executive Order and the Open Data Policy.