Mission & Values
Visual Government Inc is a civic tech consultancy on a mission to provide transparency solutions for public finance at a price affordable to all cities and towns through the use of free, open-source software. Our own contribution is Visual Budget, a set of free WordPress plug-ins and a data standard which organizes datasets and visualizations that can be embedded in web sites built on WordPress, Drupal, other content management systems, and hand-coded sites.
We work with municipal governments and interested citizens to help use technology to catalyze government openness and transparency. Specifically, we use web technology to enable citizens to interact with their government’s financial and other public numerical data through sophisticated visualization techniques.We work with municipalities using technology to catalyze government openness and transparency. Our overarching goal is to enable more effective democratic participation in municipal government across the country, with a particular focus on the government budget and spending flow, so that the values of an informed and engaged community are reflected in that budget.
My Administration is committed to creating an unprecedented level of openness in Government. We will work together to ensure the public trust and establish a system of transparency, public participation, and collaboration. Openness will strengthen our democracy and promote efficiency and effectiveness in Government.
PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA, 1/11/2009
The VisGov initiative exemplifies the nation’s commitment to the national Open Government Initiative and the international Open Government Partnership (OGP), a global effort to encourage transparent, effective, and accountable governance. President Obama has challenged agencies to “harness new technologies” and “solicit public feedback to identify information of greatest use to the public” and emphasizes “bottom-up” philosophy that taps citizen expertise to make government more responsive to private sector demands. Since the beginning of this administration, many related efforts such as the Sunlight Foundation and Code for America have experienced healthy and steady grow under the Open Government Initiative. A new generation of municipal leaders has committed to making government more open and transparent. Visual Government’s unique open-source visualization tools help turn data into transparent, meaningful, accurate information.
VIsual Government Inc. is a Massachusetts Corporation, EIN 81-1502771, organized in 2016 as a Benefit Corporation.
Visual Government (VisGov) is a working group that has emerged from the award-winning Arlington Visual Budget project, with diverse backgrounds in technology, software engineering, user experience design, and municipal finance.
VisGov provides web-based, interactive graphical tools that help cities and towns convey the “story” of a municipality’s policies and priorities and establish credibility and support through transparency and openness.
Our technical partner is Involution Studios of Arlington (www.goinvo.com). Involution is the software strategy and design partner of choice for the best companies in the world, such as Apple, Microsoft, and Oracle.