Government Transparency

Pioneer Institute is the leading voice for open and accountable government in Massachusetts. One of our major initiatives is to give citizens direct access to government spending data and documents. We believe that Massachusetts taxpayers deserve a thorough account of how tax dollars are spent, and how controversial decisions are made. We invite you to try out our portfolio of online transparency applications.

Transparency Toolkit


Our 2.0 version of gives users access to who is receiving government contracts, state employees’ salaries and pensions. Data analysis tools help readers probe deeper, to understand how pensions have changed over time, the size of the average pension, and which employment groups earn higher or lower pensions, etc.


Through MassReportCards, you can access invaluable information on MCAS scores, dropout rates, and other important indicators of the quality of your children’s schools. Compare one school to another, districts to districts, and choose your own metrics to do so.


A new addition to our transparency toolkit, Munishare assembles in one clearinghouse the very best reports generated by local committees to reform local government.


How does one city compare to another in terms of crime prevention and public safety, fiscal management, economic growth, and education? MassCityStats lets you compare cities, or even compare a city against itself years ago—and, again, you get to choose the metrics important to you.


RateYourCommunity is a resource for citizens, especially those serving on municipal finance committees, to analyze the effectiveness and efficiency of their community’s spending.

In 2012, Pioneer Institute proudly reprised this exciting online tool — a spending map of Massachusetts’ state government — designed to help bring about more openness and accountability.

The map presents hundreds of government departments, agencies, and programs in a visual format, proportionate in size to their funding level. Looking at the whole map, viewers can ascertain the state’s spending priorities. You will also be able to scroll over and zoom into each component for a more in-depth examination of the number of agencies and departments that exist, and easily identify bureaucracy, inefficiency, and unnecessary duplication.

Pioneer is pleased to provide this useful online map in an adjustable display format for all Massachusetts citizens interested in obtaining information about your government in a manner that is speedy, user-friendly, and free.

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As a small non-profit, we depend on the generous support of individuals like you to fund our important research and programs.

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