Winners of Knight News Challenge on Open Gov Announced

The has announced the winners of the , an effort launched by Knight in February to identify solutions that make public information more relevant and useful to all Americans.

The eight winning projects will receive a total of more than $3.2 million in funding to develop new tools and approaches to the way people and governments interact. The winning projects are , which was awarded $220,000 to provide real-time information on vacant and underutilized properties, enabling and facilitating data-driven community development; , which will receive $500,000 to create tools and servers that meet government regulations and enable government developers to build and adopt new technology; , which was awarded $450,000 to build open-source software that enables governments to simplify the business registration process; , which will receive $350,000 to develop open government tools and neighborhood-driven requests for data to help address low-income residents' needs; , which will receive an unspecified amount through the to develop an online public policy simulator that visualizes the impact of specific policies; the , which was awarded $600,000 to make state and appellate court documents freely available and more accessible; , which was awarded $111,000 to create a tool for governments and contractors that makes it easier for them to provide information about local planning projects; and , which will receive $460,000 to develop a tool to make government contract bidding more transparent.

In addition, six other projects received funding through the , which provides up to $50,000 to help innovators take their projects from idea to demonstration mode.

"While technology has changed nearly every aspect of our lives, it is only beginning to affect the civic sphere," said Michael Maness, vice president for journalism and media innovation at the Knight Foundation. "We see a tremendous opportunity in developing new technologies and approaches that can reinvent the way people relate to their governments, provide journalists the information they need, and ultimately strengthen our democracy."

For more information on the , visit the Knight Foundation Web site.

"." John S. and James L. Knight Foundation Press Release 06/11/2013.