This Fall: Open Gov West Holds Leaders Summit

San Diego, California -- November 14-16th, 2012

Open Gov Leaders Summit will be a discussion-driven summit of 100 open government leaders.

From Sarah Schacht:

Today, I’m excited to announce a new focus for Knowledge As Power’s annual conference. Open Gov West 2012, scheduled for November 14-16th, in San Diego, California, was due to open ticket sales today. But instead of our usual conference, we are going to shift our approach.

We’ll be hosting an Open Gov Leaders Summit. Still a three day gathering, this meeting of 100 experts and emerging open government voices will focus on conversation and the direction of the movement. There is an urgent need to clarify what “open government” means right now, and to identify priorities for our community. As a product of the summit, attendees will produce a open government work plan, papers with recommendations and case studies, and an agenda for leadership conversations over 2013.

Why the change of conference style?

In the last two years, Knowledge As Power has convened over 1,500 participants in three conferences, a data standards summit, a legislative data standards training, and meetups across US and Canada. OGW has been a resource for dozens of governments, numerous companies, and the community of open government practitioners.

I’m skeptical that a typical conference format will yield the action-oriented results so many of us are hungry for: This summit will use relationship building, a discussion agenda, and a series of summit products to directly fuel the community’s work.

Inspired by my time at Web of Change (, and conversations with leading open government practitioners, I'm hoping this summit will have a similar effect on the open government community as Web of Change’s alumni have shaken up the world of technology for social change.

I believe open government is the future of both democracy and governance. Call me idealistic, but I believe open government is more than merely a set of values. It's a pragmatic vision for getting things done.

And if you, like me, believe it’s time to:
  • Define open government beyond a fuzzy, warm marketing term
  • Set collectively defined goals for open government
  • Deliver open government priorities and guides that are accessible and action-oriented
  • Do this work at an event where every attendee is a participant
...I invite you to participate in the Open Gov Leaders Summit (OGLS) in San Diego. OGLS will announce key themes in the next two weeks, and applications to attend are open now. We will also make space available to emerging open government leaders---those interested in implementing open government projects and those looking to gain more expertise in the field.

Here's How to Participate

In the next two weeks, OGLS’s "theme team” will convene to set key themes for the summit and a summit schedule. If you’d like to join the theme team, please let me know. And if you’re interested in contributing to the event as a sponsor, well, thank you! Get in touch.

If you are interested in convening conversations at OGLS, presenting research, or moderating discussions, apply to participate (we just want to hear a paragraph or two about your work to make sure the summit is representative), and our theme team will invite summit participants to host discussions, sessions, and presentations.

I hope that all of you in the Open Gov West community consider joining us at Open Gov Leaders Summit, and in late 2013, I’m looking forward to bringing OGW back. If you have any questions or comments about the new format for this year, please let me know. I’m happy to talk.

All the Best,

Sarah Schacht
Executive Director
Knowledge As Power
Founder, Open Gov West & Open Gov Leaders Summit

November 2012




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