Drupal powers hundreds of government websites in the U.S. and globally including national, local and intergovernmental organizations.

In the United States, in addition to Whitehouse.gov, Drupal is used by over 150 federal agency websites including NASA and the Departments of: Energy, Defense, Education, Commerce, Health, and Transportation among others. Worldwide, Drupal is used by government sites from Albania to Zimbabwe, and countries with names starting with almost every letter of the alphabet in between - only O, W, and X are missing. Drupal is a proven CMS that meets the diverse needs of government organizations around the globe.

Why has Drupal become the choice of so many government organizations?

  • Open source: Leverages the contributions from thousands of developers to constantly grow and improve.
  • Rapid deployment: Unlimited ability to integrate with other proprietary and third-party platforms.
  • Lower cost: Free core software plus thousands of contributed modules.
  • Scale to any size: Used by smaller municipalities and the largest US federal agencies.
  • Modular: Increased flexibility to suit specialized needs within organizations.
  • Single platform - Multisite support: Run multiple websites from a single installation of Drupal.
  • Accessibility: The Drupal community is strongly committed to making sure Drupal is an accessible tool for building websites that can be accessed by people with disabilities.

In short, Drupal offers government organizations a high degree of flexibility at much lower cost than traditional proprietary licensed software models.

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Table of Contents

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Video Overviews

Search the Drupal Association YouTube channel for government website related videos.

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Getting Started

Below is a collection of resources used to build government websites around the world.

Distributions: Distributions are full copies of Drupal that include Drupal Core, along with additional software such as themes, modules, libraries, and installation profiles. Distributions are a way to get a pre-configured website up and running quickly.

  • aGov: A Drupal 7 distribution developed specifically for Australian government organizations. aGov is suitable for both large and small agencies, across local, state and federal portfolios.
  • DataPublic: A Drupal installation profile/distribution for Open Government initiative. It comes bundled with over a dozen custom features and modules that are unique to an Open Gov initiative.
  • DKAN: A Drupal-based open data platform with a full suite of cataloging, publishing and visualization features that allows governments, nonprofits and universities to easily publish data to the public.
  • Mark-a-Spot: A fully responsive mobile and desktop tool for public civic issue reporting and crowdmapping including an Open311 Server which is run by several city administrations.
  • OpenPublic: Provides a distribution specially designed for open government requirements, such as improving citizen services, providing public access to data and providing a public forum for two way communication with agencies, without compromising accessibility, security, or usability.
  • OpenPublic Europe: An additional theme tailored to European governments.
  • Transcribr: This distribution includes all modules and themes required to emulate the National Archives site.
  • Web Experience Toolkit: This distribution is open source software led by the Government of Canada and free for use by departments and external web communities.

Additional Distributions for government and related websites.

Modules: Modules make it possible to customize a Drupal site to the needs of your organization. If you are new to Drupal Module development, here is an overview of modules.

A compiled list of many of the contributed modules used to build Whitehouse.gov.

More Drupal resources used to build Whitehouse.gov.

  • Open Atrium: An intranet in a box that has group spaces to allow different teams to have their own conversations and collaboration.
  • Features: Enables the capture and management of features in Drupal. A feature is a collection of Drupal entities which taken together satisfy a certain use-case.
  • Spaces: An API module intended to make configuration options generally available only at the sitewide level to be configurable and overridden by individual "spaces" on a Drupal site.
  • Boxes: A reimplementation of the custom blocks (boxes) that the core block module provides.
  • Strongarm: Gives site builders a way to override the default variable values that Drupal core and contributed modules ship with. It is not an end user tool, but a developer and site builder tool which provides an API and a limited UI.
  • OpenCalais: An integration of the Thomson Reuters' Calais web service into the Drupal platform. The Calais Web Service automatically creates rich semantic metadata for the content you submit – in well under a second.
  • IMCE SWFUpload: A module to integrate the SWFUpload module into the IMCE file manager to allow for multiple uploads.
  • Short URL: An API module that allows the creation of branded short URLs. This module is a developer tool that takes a URL of any length and produces very short URLs (3-5 characters).

Additional modules created by Whitehouse.gov developers that add to Drupal's functionality.

  • Context HTTP Headers: Provides a set of Context reactions that allow you to set HTTP Response Headers for each context on your site. It is a generalized framework for response header handling that allows the sending of any arbitrary header value(s).
  • Akamai: Provides an integration with the Akamai Cache Control Utility (CCU) Web Service. This enables the purge/invalidation of cached URLs in the Akamai Global Network in response to different site events.
  • GovDelivery Integration: Provides government agencies access to Subscription Sign Up Services, Topic Creation Services and Integrated Transactional Messaging Services using Drupal modules.
  • Node Embed: Provides an input filter for CKEditor integration allowing a content editor the ability to embed the rendering of nodes within the body/fields of another node. This uses a View to allow for the browsing/preview/selection of a node to embed and provides a set of template suggestions that allow for the detailed control of node rendering when in embedded mode.
  • IMCE Tools: A package of useful functionality for use with IMCE. This package contains three modules: IMCE Directory Manager, IMCE Search, IMCE File Path.
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Case Studies

Case studies featuring government websites built using Drupal.

Georgia.gov Georgia.gov
US Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs US Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs
Trinidad & Tobago 50 years of Independence of Trinidad & Tobago
Staffordshire Moorlands District Council Staffordshire Moorlands District Council

More case studies featuring government websites built using Drupal

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Community Support

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Additional Resource Guides and Informational Pages

Here are some links to more Resource Guides and Informational Pages.

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