Open Government Plan

On January 21, 2009, President Obama issued the first executive memorandum of his Administration, entitled “Transparency and Open Government.”  This memorandum established three guiding principles for the conduct of government activities. Government should be transparent.  Government should be participatory.  Government should be collaborative.

The Department of Commerce (the Department) is committed to the principles of Open Government, and we are pleased to present this release of the 2016 Department of Commerce Open Government Plan, version 4.0 (the Plan).  The Plan is updated annually to ensure the most current status of existing initiatives along with discussion of new initiatives are made available to the public.  This release represents its seventh publication and builds on the Department’s long history of information dissemination and the adoption of new tools and technology to enable transparency.  This plan features two new flagship initiatives: (1) NIST Making More Scientific Data Available to the Public and (2) the NOAA Big Data Partnership. NIST is well on its way with efforts to make freely available to the public, in publicly accessible repositories, all peer-reviewed scholarly publications and associated data arising from unclassified research and programs funded wholly or in part by NIST. The Big Data Project is an innovative approach to publishing NOAA’s vast data resources and positioning them near cost-efficient high performance computing, analytic, and storage services provided by the private sector.

The addition of the two flagship initiatives, along with key progress updates on Open Government initiatives from our bureaus and operating units (BOU), make this an exciting edition of the Plan.  A summary of what is new in this version can be found in the “What’s New” section after the Introduction.  You will see that the Department continues to encourage and strive for increased participation and collaboration among its employees, other government agencies, and the American people to build upon our strategic goal of Operational Excellence. 

The American people are invited to join the Department as it moves towards an open and effective provider of government services and information. Please feel free to provide feedback by submitting comments to

Current Plan Version 4.0 - Published 2016

OMB Guidance for 2016 Plan

Bi-annual Retrospective Review Report (July 5, 2016)

Previous Plans


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Questions and Comments

Send Questions or Comments on the Commerce Open Government program to


Office of Privacy and Open Government
Office of the Chief Financial Officer and Assistant Secretary for Administration
U.S. Department of Commerce

Page last updated:November 3, 2016