The digital revolution and technological development, particularly the excellent platform provided by the internet, offer a unique opportunity for communication between numerous entities and for increased transparency and accessibility.
The infrastructure for innovative democracy is based on the principles of the open government concept – transparency and reportability, participation of the public, accountability and integrating innovative technologies into the interface between government and citizens. These principles are promoted, among other things, by the international Open Government Partnership, an initiative headed by governments and civic society social organizations in more than70 countries, among them Israel, which joined the Partnership in 2012.
The values underlying the open government principle go hand in hand with the achievements of the digital revolution – free flow of information and information sharing (subject to legal limitations regarding types of sensitive information); reducing distance, time and language barriers; and adoption of advanced technologies. Adopting the Open Government principle creates opportunities to advance data driven innovation that views the government as a supplier of information, and to promote public access to government databases with economic and social utilities. By opening government databases, the enormous amount of information collected by the government becomes an economic asset, the basis for developing innovative services that provide value to the citizens and to the economy. Thus, for example, in 2012, the Transportation Ministry developed the Public Transportation Database that contains all the timetables and routes of public transportation operators and collects travel data from buses. This quickly led to myriad applications based on the information that provide public transportation passengers quality and up-to-date information about travel times.
According to government resolutions to promote an open government policy, and the government resolution to adopt a policy of public access to government databases, the Government ICT Authority is acting to promote initiatives in line with the principles of the Open Government Partnership. Thus, use of digital means will be expanded in the aim of increasing government transparency, government ministries will act to enable public access to government databases and initiatives will be advanced to increase public involvement in decision-making processes. Furthermore, the Government ICT Authority is formulating a government open code policy, in coordination with the Accountant General Division and in cooperation with government ministries. The government will also act to open and make accessible the necessary infrastructures to ensure the success of these steps, for example portals for displaying up-to-date and reliable government information and public engagement platforms.
(headed by the Government ICT Authority)
This website, that displays reliable and authorized government information for use by the general public, is a renewed version of the original website that was established following a decision of a Minister’s Committee in 2010. The information provides access to government databases in an open code portal, which gives users a free hand to develop applications and systems (API).