Tag Archives: Government

State Dept. blocks access to MOOCs in countries with economic sanctions

“Massive open online course providers have identified global expansion as one of the key goals of 2014, but a recent directive from the federal government has forced some of them to cut off access to students in certain countries. Federal regulations prohibit U.S. businesses from offering services to countries subject to economic sanctions — a list that includes Cuba, Iran, Syria and Sudan — but as recently as this month, students in those countries were still able to access Coursera’s MOOCs. When a student last week attempted to log in from a Syrian IP address, the website produced an error message…” (via Inside Higher Ed)

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Top librarian job up for grabs; head of Library and Archives Canada could bag a $226,500 salary

“The search has begun for Canada’s top librarian. The next head of Library and Archives Canada — who will make between $192,600 and $226,500 a year, according to the job posting — will replace controversial figure Daniel Caron, who resigned from the post in May after coming under fire for inappropriate spending. Caron’s starting salary when he took the job in 2009 was between $180,800 and $212,700.” (via Canada.com)

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Government shutdown curbs academic research at many levels

“A wide range of academic research across the country, from sophisticated biomedical experiments at the National Institutes of Health to undergraduate political science essays, was being interrupted Wednesday as the federal government shutdown continued for a second day — with no clear path to a resolution. In addition to forcing the closure of government buildings  where research is conducted — such as the Library of Congress and presidential libraries — the shutdown was also cutting off access to myriad electronic resources on which many researchers depend.” (via Inside Higher Ed)

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Library of Congress and FTC will take their sites offline if gov’t shuts down

“With the possibility of an American federal government shutdown looming next week as the result of the debt-ceiling crisis, at least some government websites are going dark, including the Library of Congress and the National Park Service. It’s not exactly clear why some sites in Washington, DC, would go offline and others would stay online, nor is it clear how shutting down a government website would save any significant amount of money. “In the event of a temporary shutdown of the federal government, beginning Tuesday, October 1, all Library of Congress buildings will close to the public and researchers,” the Library of Congress wrote on its website on Friday. “All public events will be cancelled and websites will be inaccessible.” (via Ars Technica)

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Information Security Oversight Office Releases Report on Classification Guidance Reviews

“The National Archives Information Security Oversight Office (ISOO) today released the first Executive branch-wide Fundamental Classification Guidance Review covering 25 Federal agencies with significant classification programs. Agency summaries are online. The review serves as a guide and benchmark for Federal agencies to ensure proper classification of information vital to national security, while expediting declassification by avoiding over-classification and unnecessary withholding of records. Accurate and current classification guides also ensure standardized classification within and across Federal agencies. Of the 3,103 classification guides reviewed, 869 were either cancelled or consolidated; numerous projects, programs, or categories were eliminated, revised, consolidated, or condensed.”

via National Archives

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Overhaul of Federal Record-Keeping Ordered By NARA, Office of Management and Budget

“A major overhaul in the way federal departments and agencies manage and preserve their records was ordered today by the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) and the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). In a directive that carries out a presidential memorandum to reform records management for the 21st century, NARA and OMB said that all agencies must begin to manage their records, including emails, in electronic format by the end of the decade. The directive also requires each agency to designate a high-ranking agency official to oversee its records management programs and to ensure that all appropriate staff receive records management training.”

via National Archives

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Commerce Department Declares Winners in the Commerce Business Apps Challenge

“An online application that allows businesses to compare themselves to their competitors, locate their competition, customers, and suppliers, and find the best places to advertise and their developer team of four won the Commerce Department’s first prize and $5,000 in the nationwide Commerce Business Apps Challenge sponsored by the U.S. Department of Commerce. The winning apps use at least one Department of Commerce data set that assists businesses and/or improves the service delivery of Business.USA.gov to the business community. BusinessUSA is a centralized, one-stop platform to make it easier than ever for businesses to access services to help them grow and hire. All of these winners equip businesses with tools to be more competitive around the world, while creating jobs here at home.”

via Department of Commerce

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A.G. Schneiderman Launches “NY Open Government” Online Tool To Promote Transparency & Accountability

Press Release – “Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman took another major step in his drive to bolster transparency in state government by launching “New York Open Government,” a major expansion of the office’s Project Sunlight website. The new site is designed to help voters, the media and government watchdogs hold state government accountable by providing the public with comprehensive, up-to-date, and user-friendly information on campaign contributions, lobbying, and state contracts.”

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Libraries Can Connect the Public to Open Government

OMB Watch – “In recent years, government has increasingly embraced the proactive disclosure of information and created online tools to increase transparency. But how do Americans discover that information? Who helps them learn how to use complex government databases and tools? The answer may be a surprisingly familiar one: libraries. Libraries have traditionally played a leading role in helping the public discover and use government information. However, the rapid expansion of e-government creates new opportunities and challenges for empowering the public with such information. The Government Printing Office (GPO) is now considering a proposal that could help libraries around the country to modernize and expand their government information services, supporting equitable public access to information and amplifying the impact of open government initiatives.”

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The Download: FCC opens ‘technology experience center’ for staff, industry to interact

Washington Post – “A herd of interns huddled around a display table of tech gadgets at the Federal Communications Commission last week, picking up and passing around Hasbro 3-D goggles, an Amazon Kindle and a Polaroid photo printer designed by Lady Gaga. The agency converted a corner of its library into a “technology experience center” where employees can interact with the latest gizmos from companies that are directly impacted by the FCC’s policies.”

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