Lead Scientist and UX Researcher April Osajima is talking to tourists at the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center.
She needs their opinions on a website that, once live, will do something unprecedented— enable anyone with an Internet connection to gain visibility into federal spending, starting with annual totals and zooming in to see dollar amounts for each sector, each program, each city, each contract.
Booz Allen Hamilton, teaming with Kearney & Company, is building it for the U.S. Department of Treasury as part of its effort to implement the 2014 Digital Accountability and Transparency Act (DATA Act), designed to give Americans a clearer understanding of how their tax dollars are spent.
As breakfast turns to lunch, April spends a few hours opening up her laptop for a friendly slice of outside-the-Beltway citizenry in compliance with federal guidelines governing research procedures. All she has to show people at this point is a mockup of the homepage, USAspending.gov, but it’s enough to elicit reactions that will change the course of the site’s design.
Her trips to the Capitol are just one part of our trailblazing approach to the DATA Act’s implementation. We’re calling it Open Disruption, and with open-source code, continuous delivery, and an Agile design methodology, it’s almost as radical as the total spending transparency that the DATA Act aims to achieve.