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July 16, 2013

Library of Congress Announces Legislative Data Challenge

The Library of Congress, at the request of the U.S. House of Representatives, is utilizing the Challenge.gov platform to advance the exchange of legislative information worldwide.

Akoma Ntoso (www.akomantoso.org (external link)) is a framework used in many other countries around the world to annotate and format electronic versions of parliamentary, legislative and judiciary documents. The challenge, "Markup of U.S. Legislation in Akoma Ntoso", invites competitors to apply the Akoma Ntoso schema to U.S. federal legislative information so it can be more broadly accessed and analyzed alongside legislative documents created elsewhere.

"The Library works closely with the Congress and related agencies to make America’s federal legislative record more widely available through Congress.gov," said Robert Dizard Jr., Deputy Librarian of Congress. "This challenge will build on that accessibility goal by advancing the possibilities related to international frameworks. American legislators, analysts, and the public can benefit from international standards that reflect U.S. legislation, thereby allowing better comparative legislative information. We are initiating this effort as people around the world are working to share legislative information across nations and other jurisdictions."

Utilizing U.S. bill text, challenge participants would attempt to markup the text into electronic versions using the Akoma Ntoso framework. Participants will be expected to identify any issues that appear when applying the Akoma Ntoso schema to U.S. bill text, recommend solutions to resolve those issues, and provide information on the tools used to create the markup.

The challenge, which opened today and closes Oct. 31, 2013, is extended to participants 18 years of age or older. For the official rules and more detailed information about the challenge or to enter a submission, visit akoma-ntoso-markup.challenge.gov.

The competition’s three judges are experts in either U.S. legislation XML standards or the Akoma Ntoso legal schema. The Library of Congress will announce the winner of the $5,000 prize on Dec. 19, 2013.

Challenge.gov is an online platform administered by the U.S. General Services Administration in partnership with ChallegePost that empowers the U.S. government and the public to bring the best ideas and top talent to bear on our nation’s most pressing challenges. Submissions can range from simple suggestions to complex proofs of concept, designs or finished products that solve the grand challenges of the 21st century.

Founded in 1800, the Library of Congress is the nation’s oldest federal cultural institution. The Library seeks to spark imagination and creativity and to further human understanding and wisdom by providing access to knowledge through its magnificent collections, programs, publications and exhibitions. Many of the Library’s rich resources can be accessed through its website at www.loc.gov.

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PR 13-122
07/16/13
ISSN 0731-3527

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