What We Do

Open the Government is an inclusive, nonpartisan coalition that works to strengthen our democracy and empower the public by advancing policies that create a more open, accountable, and responsive government.

OTG launched in 2003 to push back against the increase in government secrecy that followed the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The OTG coalition transcends ideological and partisan lines and includes progressives, libertarians, and conservatives. Our broad-based coalition includes more than 100 organizations that represent the interests of journalists, environmentalists, librarians and scientists as well as those that advocate for civil liberties, human rights, and good-and limited-government. Despite their diversity, all OTG partners are united in their belief that transparency is foundational to creating an accountable government.

What We Do
To advance the public’s right to know, Open the Government harnesses the power of our coalition to advance policies and practices that:

• Create accountability by informing the public through securing, preserving and increasing access to records
• Protect national security by decreasing secrecy
• Empower communities by increasing access to information
• Secure checks and balances by addressing threats to norms of access and openness

Why We Do It
An accountable government is the foundation of a strong democracy. Transparency in government is critical to ensuring accountable politicians and good policy on issues people care about most, such as the economy, healthcare, jobs, and education. We need access to information held by, for and about our government to create a government that is responsive to the people’s interests, not special interests, and to ensure our policy-makers play by the same rules as everyone else.