Democracy: Eventually Digitally Transparent?
2022-07-24, 22:00–22:50, Abacus 🧮

[Watch the video or slides of this talk].

Governments should be radically more transparent. While calls for more open data and initiatives like the Open Government Partnership have existed for more than a decade, there is still much to be desired. Where do we stand? And, fun to imagine, where could and should we go?

It is hard to have a perfect overview of the status of open government across the world. We at Open State Foundation focus mostly on accelerating digital transparency in the Netherlands. We will explain things like:

  • Why is the Handelsregister (company register) still only fully accessible for those with a lot of money?
  • Why are Wob-verzoeken (Freedom of Information requests) on average not answered within the legal deadline?
  • How transparent are the external meetings of ministers and who do they talk to?

On the other hand we show why the Netherlands is a great place if you want to know how your municipalities spend their money or want to access national statistics.

Still there is much to learn from other countries:
- How does Norway manage their information so well that they respond to Freedom of Information requests much faster?
- What country has a minister that deals in the most open way with lobbyists?
- Can governments produce modern open source software?
These examples can show us a future of a digitally transparent democracy.

We end the talk by opening up the floor to the audience and love to hear about positive examples of transparent forms of governments around the world.

I've been a developer at Open State Foundation since 2015. I hold a BSc and MSc in Artificial Intelligence (since before it became a buzzword), but these days I'm much more into Open (Government) Data, civic tech en digital transparency.