(@susan0)

Data Availability, Information Quality, Accountability...

Clear benchmarks on Sudan

The State Department has not publicly disclosed the precise benchmarks it is applying to assess progress in Sudan. The outcome of the first quarterly review of the U.S. Sudan policy by the National Security Council Deputies Committee was undisclosed. In Sudan, tensions are high with the April national elections and January 2011 referendum on independence for southern Sudan rapidly approaching. I strongly encourage the... more »

Voting

82 votes
Active
(@jaorangemen)

Data Availability, Information Quality, Accountability...

The Department of State should live webcast all meetings

The Department of State should live webcast all meetings for proposed rule making and regulations where the public comment should take place. They should make these meetings available for on demand viewing and have the ability to have that content be indexed for video search. By doing this the public and stakeholders will be able to see the inner workings of the rule making process and make the content and proceedings... more »

Voting

25 votes
Active
(@ash000)

Data Availability, Information Quality, Accountability...

Family-Based Visa Interviews, Denials, Need for Uniform Policies

Echoing bby_horne and Stephen's comments, there are currently too many discrepancies between individual embassies and consulates and how they go about issuing Family-Based Visas (K-1, K-3, CR-1, etc). More training and stricter control by the DoS would go a long way in making sure that individual consulates and individual consular officers are not overstepping bounds, conducting visa interviews with fairness, and behaving... more »

Voting

24 votes
Active
(@stephen)

Data Availability, Information Quality, Accountability...

Family Visa Denials; K-1,K-3,CR-1, IR-1

Refusals of Family Based visas causes undue suffering and pain. Visa refusals can take months or years to overcome. The time of separation is agonizing for the family, and the stress of visa refusals can tear families apart. Consular officers often deny family based visas for the reason of "lack of a bonifide relationship." The consular officers make these refusals without a factual basis. Instead they base their reasons... more »

Voting

22 votes
Active
(@erik.streed)

Data Availability, Information Quality, Accountability...

Passport process tracking

It would be helpful for the State Department to setup a process tracking website for the passport process. Something similar to how FedEx/UPS/USPS allow you to track packages and get email updates about their status. E.g. that application for renewal has been received, new passport has been send, etc. This is particularly important for US citzens living overseas who may need to use their passport on a regular basis and... more »

Voting

18 votes
Active
(@stephen)

Data Availability, Information Quality, Accountability...

Ombudsman for Consular Affairs

The State Department needs an Office of Ombudsman for Consular Affairs. An Office of Ombudsman will provide a venue for citizens to express ideas for improvement, and to complain when the Office of Consular Affairs is failing in its mission. Changes, recommendations, and complaints could be made about the many areas of responsibility for Consular Affairs such as visa issuance, passports, U. S. Citizens services, etc.... more »

Voting

14 votes
Active
(@jason.miller)

Working Together: Governments, Businesses, Non-Profits...

Mass atrocities input form

I think individuals and organizations should be able to submit a defined set of forms and supporting evidence (as specified by State) showing that mass atrocities are happening in a particular region. Assuming evidentiary standards that State lays out for the input forms is met, then State will automatically follow-up and issue an analysis of the situation, including an assessment of all possible actions that could be... more »

Voting

13 votes
Active
(@colinake)

Working Together: Governments, Businesses, Non-Profits...

Fix ITAR

Fix ITAR. Small companies are being handicapped by having to devote extraordinary amounts of time and money to comply with ITAR policies. Talk to commercial space companies (and other impacted industries) about their experiences, determine what's broken and how to better the situation, and then actually fix it. Find the middle ground where certain information is kept from those that do not need to acquire it but small... more »

Voting

13 votes
Active
(@bbbyhorne)

Data Availability, Information Quality, Accountability...

Visa Interview Policies..

In regards to Visas for Spouse or Fiance/Fiancee, It would not cost our government $1 more to do the Visa Interview in a Professional and Fair manner. There is very little information as to the "Real/Actual Requirements" on Visa Interview Policies, only the VAGUE guidelines, that a Visa Interview Officer may or may not use. Obtaining a Visa SOLELY rest with the Visa Interview Officer's DISCRETION, which means, "ability... more »

Voting

12 votes
Active
(@michaelwalsh)

Public Feedback & Involvement, Tools & Strategies...

Social Media Platform for International Disaster Response

The Department of State should establish a social platform that enables real-time, two-way feedback between crisis victims and international disaster responders. The platform should integrate with existing social media platforms (ex. Twitter) and be mobile device enabled. The platform should be easily customized for any crisis and rapidly deployed following the on-start of the crisis. [*By establish, the Department could... more »

Voting

11 votes
Active
(@michaelwalsh)

New Ways of Doing Business, New Tools...

Advance Open Diplomacy in Parallel with Open Government

The U.S. Government should invest significant resources to advance the concept of open diplomacy. This new construct would rely heavily upon the U.S. Government’s existing e-diplomacy and public diplomacy tradition. However, it would not be limited to these disciplines. Open diplomacy would serve as the overall diplomatic strategy for the country - placing new emphasis on: 1) increasing transparency, promoting openness,... more »

Voting

11 votes
Active
(@kohlgill)

Working Together: Governments, Businesses, Non-Profits...

Publish Winning Grant Proposals to Improve Proposal Caliber

The Department often seeks proposals for grants to perform international engagement, like election monitoring in Afghanistan, or supporting women's rights in Iraq. Often the most innovative proposals come from small, new organizations with little experience with the Department's proposal process. These organizations don't have access to complete, published proposals that have won previous grants. They either flounder... more »

Voting

10 votes
Active
(@michaelwalsh)

Data Availability, Information Quality, Accountability...

International Disaster Response Data Set for Data.Gov

State Department - in collaboration with other relevant executive branch partners (ex. DHS, NGA, DoD, NASA) - should publish a comprehensive set of normalized, geo-coded data sets for all high-value data and information related to international (and domestic) disaster response. The data repository should be published as a set of data sets on Data.Gov. The data sets should contain contextual information to aid in their... more »

Voting

9 votes
Active
(@michaelwalsh)

New Ways of Doing Business, New Tools...

Cultural Community to Build Bridges between U.S. and Foreigners

The Department of State should develop a vibrant cultural exchange community that enables Americans to introduce their culture to foreigners on a personal level. The site should prioritize visceral multimedia content and encourage deep interaction between users. This can be accomplished by enabling users to upload their own stories, pictures, and videos related to American culture alongside polished historical content... more »

Voting

9 votes
Active
(@michaelwalsh)

Working Together: Governments, Businesses, Non-Profits...

Promote the Development of Web 2.0 Solutions

The Department of State has a strong record of experimentation with Web 2.0 technologies. This includes creating a number of social networking sites (ex. Exchanges Connect and State Alumni Network), participating in virtual communities (ex. Second Life), and launching mobile applications (ex. Haiti widget). Of these various examples, the ones with the most impact are those that leverage public - private partnerships (ex.... more »

Voting

9 votes
Active