Statistics compiled by the Congressional Research Service show that 6,640 American service members died as a result of military operations in Afghanistan and Iraq since 2011.The number of American service members diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder or traumatic brain injury has continued to trend upward, albeit at a slower rate.
The White House has raised the signature threshold petitions on its We the People website must reach to receive an official administration response after the administration was inundated with both serious and inflammatory petitions that reached a previous threshold.
The Office of Management and Budget is adding actual data and goals to its Performance.gov site to shine light on what progress has or hasn't happened in federal agency programs, but OMB cautions that the push for data and the website itself are still works in progress. Twenty-four agencies provided OMB with a list of their goals and related information.
Sixty-two of 99 federal agencies haven't implemented Obama administration policies for responding to Freedom of Information Act requests, says George Washington University's National Security Archive government watchdog. In the Archive's latest annual FOIA assessment, it says FOIA compliance is extremely mixed among agencies despite the administration's openness goals.
Denmark, Finland and New Zealand tied for first place as the least corrupt countries in the world, according to Transparency International's 2012 Corruption Perception Index, which measures perceived levels of government corruption in 176 countries worldwide.
In a Nov. 20 blog post, the World Bank announced a five-part toolkit that tackles the main developments needed for an open government and open data framework: a knowledge repository, information technology solutions, demand for data, a supply of data and a readiness assessment tool to serve as a starting point for government tools.
Super PACs and nonprofits that don't have to reveal their donors have spent more than $840 million on the 2012 election, the Center for Responsive Politics says on its OpenSecrets blog. The Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit estimates that conservative groups have spent $577 million compared to $237 million from liberals groups.
Providing access to a data set only goes halfway in delivering transparency; infographics and data visualizations are the second phase of open government, according to one Internal Revenue Service official. "We're trying to redefine what we mean by data user," said Wayne Kei, chief of communications and data dissemination at the IRS's statistics of income division.
As the Open Government Partnership marked one year, the United States and Brazil formally passed on leadership responsibilities on Sept. 26 to new OGP co-chairs the United Kingdom and Indonesia. One year ago the Open Government Partnership had just eight founding partners, but it has grown to include 57 countries, with more than 300 commitments toward transparency that impact more than 2 billion people, said the State Department in a Sept. 26 fact sheet.
President Obama Sept. 28 signed a bill (S. 3625) into law further postponing until Dec. 8 a requirement of the Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act, or STOCK Act, that government executives' financial disclosure forms to be posted online.