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Second U.S. Open Government National Action Plan Highlights FOIA

The United States released its second Open Government National Action Plan on December 5, announcing 23 new initiatives to further transparency and encourage a more efficient and effective government. One initiative, Modernizing the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), lists five specific commitments the government plans to undertake over the next two years. The National Action […]

Surging ahead into the electronic world

As we move toward a more digitized society, we’re continually looking to build upon electronic access and management of government records. FOIA requesters and agency FOIA professionals came together this week to discuss issues they face working with electronic records. Records management was a key point of discussion — electronic records can be incredibly time-saving, […]

White House Assesses FOIA Commitments

  In its March 29 self-assessment of the National Action Plan, the White House evaluated its progress on the two FOIA-related components of that plan: professionalizing FOIA administration and harnessing the power of technology. During Sunshine Week 2012, the Office of Personnel Management announced the creation of the Government Information Series. This specialized field within […]

Requesting Records Across Agencies

With 100 departments and agencies, the Executive Branch can feel downright massive sometimes. Although each of the 100 has a separate and distinct mission, and no doubt creates very different kinds of records, there is also some overlap in the way agencies operate and with the records they keep. Since its start, OGIS has been […]

Civil War-era Pension Records: An OGIS Case Study

When University of California–Los Angeles economics professor Dora Costa started looking at aging processes and extreme longevity, she knew military files of Civil War veterans would be crucial to her research. Costa planned to compare medical records and life histories of Civil War veterans with present-day veterans’ records for soldiers who lived to be at […]