A new administrative culture
Open Government - a new administrative culture emerges. In other words, the state and administration are opening up to the citizens, civil society, the media, science and education as well as the economy. Transparency is the key. It allows citizens to engage in the administration's thoughts and decisions and encourages closely working together.
In December 2016, Germany joined the Open Government Partnership (OGP): a global network of currently 75 countries whose governments have committed themselves to implement the idea of an open government within their nation following certain criteria. Their motto: "Open by default".
The Baden-Württemberg freedom of information act reversed the information process. Earlier, citizens had to explain to the Offices why they wanted information. Now, the authorities have to make information available to the public and must explain why citizens cannot receive certain information.
The central tool of Open Government is Open Government Data, in short: Open Data. The idea is to make public administration data freely available and usable, in compliance with data protection and confidentiality regulations. An excellent example of an Open Data project in Heidelberg is accessible route planning for people with disabilities.