Democratic accountability

The recent and ongoing snail-trail of sleaze from government, along with the sometimes excessive influence of business upon our politicians may be resolved by a proposal in a paper by Jim Snider of iSolon.org published by the Centre for Technology Innovation at the Brookings Institute in the USA which is entitled Government-wide Information Sharing for Democratic Accountability. The Minister for Communities in the UK has ensured that local authorities and some government departments are now publishing their accounts in an open format, so why not the politicians? Wouldn’t that give the data-hacks some fun? This is not to denigrate the wonderful work done by Tom Steinberg and MySociety, although they already do some of this – it just increases the accountability.

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One Response to Democratic accountability

  1. lenand says:

    A good read which brings in a “Who-What-When- Where ontology”. We are trying to do this in the UK via LeGSB in cooperation with the Cabinet Office led cross-government information architecture. It needs more exposure.

    Unfortunately the author still hankers for an unreachable objective
    “If government databases tagged the name of public officials with a unique identifier, the same type of decentralized search and relationship mapping could be used to track the official actions of those officials.”

    As I have bleated many time and oft, eg http://ow.ly/7YOOQ. My 3 quarks are as relevant now as they were seven years ago. The search for a unique identifier is doomed to fail without the most intrusive of biometrics – so don’t bother – No2UID.

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