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Open Government Plan

Executive Summary

The President’s Open Government initiative represents a significant shift in the way Federal agencies conduct business and engage the public. In its first Open Government Plan, the Department of Transportation (DOT) recognized that the Open Government initiative is about more than adopting new tools and emerging technologies—it is about effecting real policy and internal culture change to ensure that our Department truly becomes even more transparent, participatory, and collaborative, both internally and externally. Building on that strong foundation, our second Open Government Plan looked at the public engagement impact of, and public value generated by, enhancing DOT’s openness. Our third Open Government Plan looks at how Open Government can help DOT become more efficient, effective, and generate economic development.

Vision for an Open DOT Culture

To support our strategic goals, DOT will pursue organizational excellence through greater transparency, increased citizen and employee collaboration, and more effective public participation while managing the risks associated with openness.

DOT is pursuing a number of Open Government initiatives in the next two years. We are pleased to announce the following activities that will continue to foster openness with our employees, stakeholders, and the general public:

Expediting Infrastructure Delivery:  DOT’s flagship initiative, eNEPA, will empower stakeholders from all levels of government, across a wide variety of agencies, to collaborate on infrastructure permitting and environmental review. See Section 3.1 for more information.

Data Release and Visualization:  DOT will continue to release high value data in open formats, implementing the Administration’s Open Data Policy. DOT will continue innovative efforts to engage the public, improve the utility of its datasets, and focus on coordinating geospatial data.  See Section 3.2 for more information.

Fostering Collaboration, Engagement and Transparency:  DOT will implement an employee suggestion to develop a skills database and will continue its employee engagement efforts under the IdeaHub program. See Section 3.3 for more information.

State Transportation Scorecards:  Using a variety of data from around the Department, DOT will develop scorecards that provide meaningful information about transportation investment and performance across the Nation. See Section 3.4 for more information.

Innovative Financing Program Transparency:  DOT will provide information to help financial program applicants better understand the overall process as well as provide status updates by bringing unprecendented transparency to the application and review process. See Section 3.5 for more information.

Delivering National Action Plan Commitments: DOT will review practices surrounding proactive disclosure, take action to protect whistleblowers, and implement transparency initiatives for its privacy program. DOT will continue to deliver on digital strategy commitments. See Section 3.6 for more information.

The following pages describe DOT’s point of view on the links between Open Government and efficiency, effectiveness, and economic development – including accountability and transparency for infrastructure project delivery (Chapter 1); approach to developing the third Open Government Plan (Chapter 2); initiatives and activities, including our flagship initiative (Chapter 3); and retrospective review of our previous Open Government Plans (Chapter 4). We have met nearly all the commitments described in our previous Open Government Plans. As with our previous Open Government Plans, this Plan is a living document. As we continue on the path towards increased transparency, participation, collaboration, and innovation, we will refine and enhance our strategic efforts. We welcome public comments regarding the content of this Plan at open@dot.gov.

Introduction to the United States Department of Transportation

The United States Department of Transportation (DOT) occupies a leadership role in global transportation, with about 55,000 dedicated professionals stationed in the U.S. and around the world. The President’s fiscal year 2014 budget request includes a total of $77 billion for DOT with an additional $50 billion for immediate transportation investments, and the funding for needed investments in our vital transportation systems while at the same time creating jobs and strengthening our Nation’s economy.

The mission of the Department is to serve the United States by ensuring a fast, safe, efficient, accessible, and convenient transportation system that meets our vital national interests and enhances the quality of life of the American people, today and into the future.

Since its first official day of operation in 1967, DOT’s transportation programs have evolved to meet the economic demands of the nation. Today, DOT comprises the Office of the Secretary (OST), the Surface Transportation Board (STB), the Office of the Inspector General (OIG), and the Operating Administrations (OAs):

  • Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)
  • Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)
  • Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA)
  • Federal Railroad Administration (FRA)
  • Federal Transit Administration (FTA)
  • Maritime Administration (MARAD)
  • National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)
  • Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA)
  • Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation (SLSDC)
Updated: Monday, June 2, 2014