Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation, Harvard Kennedy School

Thirty-four managers from 23 different federal agencies and departments came together on March 30-31, 2009, to develop recommendations for the President's Open Government Directive. Participants in the working session shared a deep commitment to empowering the public and transforming the relationship between the American people and their government. Together, they brought to the discussion a wealth of experience in public participation, collaborative problem solving and conflict resolution. The following report compiles the ideas and recommendations generated during the event.

At the working meeting participants discussed their hopes and concerns for the President's Open Government Directive and developed key indicators for evaluating the Directive's progress. They identified opportunities that the Directive should leverage and barriers that it must address to be successful. Participants developed recommendations for creating a more open government, as well as identified structures through which the Directive should be implemented and pilot projects that may be launched. This report reflects the views of almost three-dozen federal managers as well as about 10 outside experts from the field of public engagement. Though there were many points of agreement, this document also reflects the rich range of different experiences and perspectives brought by participants.

"Champions of Participation" was convened by AmericaSpeaks, Demos, Everyday Democracy, and the Ash Institute of Democratic Governance and Innovation at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government. The working session was made possible by a generous grant from the Rockefeller Brothers Fund.

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