Announcing the OpenSpending Steering Group

Written by
  • Anders Pedersen
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OpenSpending’s code base, datasets, and community have grown rapidly over the past years. In July we announced a proposal for a new community-based governance structure to support the continued growth of the project.

The new steering group and associated teams of OpenSpending will provide that structure. These groups will oversee the development of the OpenSpending project and ensure broad community influence in future plans for the project.

While OpenSpending has always been a community project, the new groups will reflect the formal recognition of a broad community of stakeholders. The legal, institutional, and infrastructural home of OpenSpending will remain with the Open Knowledge Foundation, and the Open Knowledge Foundation continues to be strongly committed to the project.

The Steering Group

The new Steering Group will have overall responsibility for the direction and management of the OpenSpending project. The steering group is to work with the community to plan the overall strategy and to implement community decisions. The responsibilities also include managing the OpenSpending brand and the use of the OpenSpending name and setting and enforcing data licensing and other policies.

Contributors from the OpenSpending community can put themselves forward to serve a two-year term on the Steering Group. Members of the existing steering group will review applications and appoint new members. To bootstrap the process, the Open Knowledge Foundation has invited members to the initial steering group from major OpenSpending stakeholders.

The steering group will include:

  • Justin Arenstein, African Media Initiate (Kenya)
  • Jay Bhalla, Open Institute (Kenya)
  • David Hall-Matthews, Publish What You Fund (United Kingdom)
  • Kaitlin Devine, Sunlight Foundation (United States)
  • Elena Mondo, International Budget Partnership (United States)
  • Oluseun Onigbinde, BudgIT (Nigeria)
  • Simon Parrish, Development Initiatives (United Kingdom)
  • Anders Pedersen, Open Knowledge Foundation (United Kingdom)
  • Federico Ramírez, Fundar (Mexico)
  • Adam Stiles, Open Budget Oakland (United States)


Our News and Website team will run our community site, including the blog and resource pages. Members will also write stories connecting spending news with the data behind them. The team already manages the blog and conducts task management using this Trello board, which includes contributors from across the world.

The data team oversees the contribution of new datasets, issues of data quality and privacy, and the management of the database. They assist community members in contributing new data and make decisions on data-related policies, standards, and legal issues.

The Technical Team comprises the official committers to the OpenSpending code repository. They oversee the technical work, including all code contributions, and are responsible for maintaining technical infrastructure.

Membership in the teams is determined by contribution. Existing team members recognise consistent good work by extending the invitation to join the team.