TransparencyCamp Europe set to lift lid on EU decision-making

This week’s TransparencyCamp Europe is set to welcome nearly 400 open government supporters in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. This ‘unconference’ brings together government officials, developers and technologists, journalists and advocates from all over Europe to share best practice and work on new ways to shine a light on EU decision-making and open government with the help of new technologies, open data and effective policies.

Participant-driven unconference and international experts

TransparancyCamp Europe is a participant-driven unconference organised by Open State Foundation and the Netherlands Presidency of the Council of the European Union. The crowd-generated programme ‘Wall’ determines the topics and attendees will lead sessions on issues like government transparency, openness and accountability facing Europe today.

Some elements of the programme are scheduled ahead, and feature speakers in the field of data and transparency such as Mar Cabra, head of the data and research unit of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, known for her research on the Panama Papers and Alex Brenninkmeijer, member of the European Court of Auditors.

Other attendees of TransparancyCamp Europe are Chris Taggart, co-founder and ceo of OpenCorporates; Ryan Heath, Senior EU Correspondent at POLITICO; Robert de Groot, DG European Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands; Marietje Schaake, member of the European parliament; Oscar Kneppers, founder and ceo of Rockstart and Kat Duffy of Sunlight Foundation.

European App Competition

The Dutch Presidency of the Council of the European Union and Open State Foundation also organised an app competition in the run up to TransparencyCamp Europe. As part of the competition, several hackathons (diplohacks) were organised by Dutch embassies in various European capitals.

Civic hackers used European open data to create new apps for European citizens. These tools help to provide easy access to EU and national government information by presenting information in places where people are looking for it, whether online or on their mobile devices. The winners of all these competitions will present their apps at TransparencyCamp Europe.

Catalyst for engaging citizens

‘As greater amounts of machine-readable government data becomes available, it is even more necessary to present this information in an accessible and understandable manner for European citizens’, says Arjan El Fassed, director of the Amsterdam-based digital transparency organisation Open State Foundation. ‘This event brings together people from different communities and enables them to share their work, ideas and experiences and hopefully will serve as a catalyst for engaging citizens with the EU.’

TransparencyCamp Europe will take place on 1 June , 2016 in Amsterdam at Pakhuis de Zwijger, located right next to the official meeting place of the EU presidency. Registration can be done via this link.