Udall Foundation*

An * indicates that this agency was not required to develop a Plan, but did.

The Udall Foundation’s Open Government Plan maps out its open government vision and strategy for its education and conflict resolution programs for 2010-2012, and the Udall Foundation should be applauded for developing the plan voluntarily. As an agency within the executive branch, Udall is unique as it has no regulatory, policy making, or adjudication functions which obviates some of the open government focus areas. Still, in the plan the Udall Foundation commits to expanding information accessibility by putting more information on-line and redesigning its websites to a more user-friendly functionality.  The plan also states that the agency intends to explore the use of social media and e-mail communications for public engagement, and will identify technology leadership within to advocate for more effective use of different media. Additionally, the plan describes a workgroup that has been formed of internal legal, records management, and the information officer staff to streamline the FOIA process. These initiatives would benefit by identifying participation from a broader range of stakeholders and more specificity in milestones and processes to achieve them. The plan would also be strengthened by more attention to formal citizen and stakeholder feedback loops.

Laudably, the plan looks beyond extending its technological outreach, setting a goal to enhance collaboration and transparency through face-to-face interchange (such as to solicit external advice on scholarship recipients) and outreach, and establish further partnerships with universities, government agencies, and private entities, rather than rely on technology as the primary media. The Udall Foundation should publish more of the outcomes of these collaboration discourses, successes and failures alike. Udall might also address some openness implementation barriers, however. For example, while the plan notes that its roster of conveners and mediators is published, a user login in required to view it.

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Feedback - Udall Foundation