Learning from #Hack4Congress

The Tuesday, May 12 #Hack4Congress awards ceremony at the House of Representatives’ majestic Judiciary Committee hearing room was the culmination of a 6 month long effort to engage technologically savvy members of the public with making Congress more open and efficient. The three winners of congressional data hackathons in Cambridge, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C. presented their projects to three members of Congress, a bipartisan array of senior congressional staff, and a packed gallery filled with journalists, advocates, staff, academics, and others.Continue Reading

Emerging Standards of Parliamentary Accountability Panel Discussion

by Júlia Keserű The 3rd International Open Government Data Conference in Ottawa is part of a full week of open data events. Alongside the pre-conference events, the National Democratic Institute, the Sunlight Foundation, and the Latin American Network on Legislative Transparency, as core partners in OpeningParliament.org, a community of civic organizations dedicated to opening up parliamentary data, will […]

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New tool: Roll Call Vote Comparisons

Member Votes table

The indefatigable Joe Carmel, creator of LegisLink, just unveiled a new tool for comparison of House Roll Call Votes. Drawing on a combination of official source material and prior work by Josh Tauberer (of GovTrack fame), the Roll Call Comparison Tool allows the easy comparison of two roll call votes, even if they don’t take place […]

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Audio of CDC at SXSW on “Your Laws, Your Data”

In March, several members of the Congressional Data Coalition spoke at SXSW in a panel entitled “Your Laws, Your Data.” (Daniel Schuman, Congressional Data Coalition co-chair; Molly Schwartz, associate fellow, R Street Institute; Molly Bohmer, data curator, Cato Institute; and Rebecca Williams, policy analyst, data.gov.) Audio from that conversation is now available.

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Report from the 2015 Legislative Data and Transparency Conference

The House of Representatives recently held its fourth annual Legislative Data and Transparency Conference. The conference provides a unique opportunity for members of Congress, congressional staff, legislative support office staff, legislative support agency staff, and the public to meet and discuss efforts to make congressional information more useful and more widely available to stakeholders inside and […]

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Identifying Legislative Data Resources and Project Ideas

As a community, we can do a better job to help people find federal legislative data sources and identify useful technology projects. This has become increasingly apparent in the wake of last week’s Legislative Data and Transparency Conference and the hackathon #Hack4Congress. Accordingly, I am pleased to announce two new community projects. First, I’ve started […]

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House Appropriators Look at Legislative Branch Transparency

At last week’s full committee markup of the Legislative branch’s appropriations bill, Rep. Mike Quigley (D-IL) offered an amendment that set the stage for more transparency around Congressional Research Service reports; Rep. Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) successfully pushed for an amendment to create a House Technology Task Force; and Rep. Mike Honda (D-CA) offered and withdrew […]

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Meet Civicist

Recently, our friends who run the Personal Democracy Forum, Civic Hall, and the recently retired group blog TechPresident, announced a new project, Civicist. Run by Micah Sifry and Andrew Rasiej, Civicist is a “hub for news and analysis of the civic tech world.” Since members of the Congressional Data Coalition are all about using legislative data to make Congress […]

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Legislative Project Ideas for Coders and Non-Coders

I thought it would be useful to identify legislative data projects in advance of the House’s annual Legislative Data and Transparency Conference and #Hack4Congress, a congressional hackathon we are co-hosting with our friends the OpenGov Foundation. I have written about some ideas previously, and others are newly published or elaborations. Not all are mine, but […]

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CDC Submits Testimony to Senate Appropriators, Outlines Next Steps for Legislative Data

On Friday, March 27th, the Congressional Data Coalition and allies submitted testimony to the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on the Legislative Branch. In the testimony, we commend he Senate for committing to publishing bill status, summary, and text in a structured-data format that is capable of download in bulk. We also requested the Senate continue down the […]

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