Public participation in government isn’t just a cornerstone of democracy, it’s how the United States government ensures that policies and practices reflect the ideas and expertise of the American people. Without public engagement, first responders and emergency response officials wouldn’t have access to certain important emergency information during a disaster, such as where power lines are down, or we wouldn’t know that more than 100,000 Americans believe the nation should declare Major League Baseball’s Opening Day to be a national holiday.
As President Obama noted on his first full day in office, government is more effective when it gathers input from the public as it makes decisions. By harnessing input and expertise from a wide array of voices, we can continue to strengthen government. Here are a few ways the public can participate in ongoing conversations surrounding open government:
These are just a few of the efforts underway to increase public participation in the conversation about open government. If you would like to share information, offer a suggestion, or learn more about attending these meetings, please contact us via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. We can’t do this without you!
Corinna Zarek is Senior Advisor to the U.S. Chief Technology Officer for Open Government.