Sunshine 2.0: Using Technology for Democracy
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Sunshine 2.0: Using Technology for Democracy



Steven Clift's presentation to the UIC e-Government Conference on May 12, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois

Steven Clift's presentation to the UIC e-Government Conference on May 12, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois



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    Sunshine 2.0: Using Technology for Democracy Sunshine 2.0: Using Technology for Democracy Presentation Transcript

    • Sunshine 2.0:Using Technology in Democracy
      Steven Clift
      Executive Director
    • Government by Day, Citizen by Night - 1994
    • Sunshine 2.0
      Vision. Demand. Goals. Measures. …for Local Democracy Online
    • Government Online –
      April 2010 report brings fresh data:
      48% of internet users have looked for information about a public policy or issue online with their local, state or federal government
      46% have looked up what services a government agency provides
      41% have downloaded government forms
      35% have researched official government documents or statistics
      33% have renewed a driver’s license or auto registration
      31% use online platforms such as blogs, social networking sites, email, online video or text messaging to get government information
      23% participate in the online debate around government policies or issues, with much of this discussion occurring outside of official government channels.
    • Outline - Example
      1. What government wants to tell us.
      2. What government must tell us. What we feel we need to know.
      3. What we want to tell government.
      4. What we need to “hear” from each other publicly in the context of government decisions.
      5. Community collaboration, problem-solving, and inclusive engagement
    • 1. What government wants to tell us.
    • A home page says 1,000 words.
      Minneapolis wants so:
      Share news it has decided is important
      Highlight “results”
      Use social media
      Provide non-English information
      Promote services strongly
      Minneapolis must:
      Post salaries of top three paid employees for 90 days on home page
    • 2. What government must tell us. What we feel we need to know.
      “public=online”? – Transparency campaign by the Sunlight Foundation
      Accountability information.
    • Timely Access to Information
      Key e-service –e-alerts so you can ACT on information before it is too late!
    • Public Meetings On-Demand
      Linked video, documents
      Also see PublicMeetings.Info
    • Reusing Data – Personalized to You
    • Budgets and Spending
      South Carolina state agencies must put spending information online
      Comptroller promoting local government efforts
    • 3. What we want to tell government
      Communication. Understanding the “will of the people” in government.
    • Contact Me!
      Old and new clash online – “Current agendas are posted in front of City Hall in King Plaza on the elevator walls …”
    • Sorting Policy Input from Service Queries
      Menlo Park, CA
      “Community Engagement Feedback”
      Both citizen and government can track responses
    • DemocracyMap
      Can you “Enter address,” see every government entity that serves you and who specifically represents you (and how to contact them)
      The United States lacks an “open data” set on ALL government jurisdictions, districts, associated websites and elected officials.
      Huge “local up” market failure
      Online working group:
    • 4. What we need to “hear” from each other publicly in the context of government decisions
      Imagining online public spaces and hearings?
    • Great Councilmember Page, But Disconnected from Two-way
    • Tip Toe in the Facebook
      Real-names giving some governments confidence to create Facebook Pages with open comments
      Why not elsewhere?
    • 5. Community collaboration, problem-solving, and inclusive engagement
    • This page left intentionally blank.
      Let’s make this happen.
    • Community collaboration
      Using Technology for Community Building Webinar
      E-Democracy Neighbors Forums – New Zealand!
      Action Alexandria
    • Democracy Home Page
      Let’s be citizen-centric online in government.
    • Democracy Home Page
      How process works, effective participation
      Decision-making information
      Who represents you?
      Good tools for elected officials
      Local laws and rules
      Local elections
      Budgets, spending, and taxes
      Ethics, Freedom of Information, Transparency data, your rights, etc.
    • Democracy “Home” – A world leading local e-democracy city (UK)
    • Democracy “Home”
      Palo Alto giving it a try with “Know Zone”
      Secrecy image?
    • Next Generation Local Democracy Features
      More examples!
    • Gathering Public Input
      Santa Cruz – UserVoice
      Amherst – Localocracy
      Manor “Labs” Texas
    • Freedom of Information Requests
      UK shares results online
    • Deep Transparency
      E-mail sent to all Palo Alto City Council members before meetings
      Data sets in Washington DC
    • Really Deep Transparency
      Post-Communist Estonia appreciates “public=online”
      Tallinn’s Document Register, National X-Road provides secure access to private data held on you
    • Local Open Government Directive
      From CityCamp Colorado came an idea – let’s create generate bottom up support for local open government
      Modeled after Federal Open Government Directive
    • Community-wide Support for Democracy Online
      Webinar preview:
    • The “default” local online news commenting experience is …
      Most people see, expect public conflict.Sharp contrast with private social networking.
    • “The most democratizing aspect of the Internet is the ability of people to organize and communicate in groups.”- Steven Clift in “Democracy is Online” article published by Internet Society, 1998
    • Neighbors Online –
      27% of American adult Internet users (or 20% of adults overall) use “digital tools to talk to their neighbors and keep informed about community issues.”
      14% read a blog dealing with community issues at least once in the last year
      13% exchanged emails with neighbors about community issues
      7% say they belong to a community e-mail list (more women)
      6% communicated with neighbors by text messaging on cell phones
      5% joined a social network site group connected to community issues
      3% followed neighbors using Twitter
      Read full report
      Lower income, Latino, rural need to be included
      Analysis on blog.
    • CC:, E-Lists, Placeblogs, Social Nets
      CC: E-mail
      The simple sheet of paper passed around at National Night Out …
      E-mail Discussion Lists forums, Google/YahooGroups, DC nhoods, Brooklyn parents
      Cornerstone of “citizen journalism” online, sometimes “watch dog” protest sites
      Local Social Networks
      Facebook Pages/Groups, Ning Sites, etc.
      Networks: Everyblock (v2), OhSoWe, Hey Neighbor, i-Neighbors (academic), Front Porch Forum, CommonPlace, Hello Elephant, and perhaps open source, non-profit social enterprise led by
    • City Hall
      Local Media
      Networks”e-mail forwards
      Civil Society
      Creating Public Space - Issues Forums
      Ctizen #1
      Arts Group
      City Councilor
      New Resident
      Issues Forum
      GroupServer e-mails posts web view
      Local Biz
      Subscribe once
      Commitment secured
      Post via e-mail/web
      Citizen 500
      Advocacy Group
      Neighborhood Leader
      Forum Manager
    • Neighbor Issues Forums Stories
      Somali community – 20 missing youth to crosswalks
      “Little Mekong” and BoaLee’s lessons
      Powderhorn Cinco de Mayoviolence
      Community garden
      Chickens in Bemidji
      Leech Lake Native American majority rural forum
      Inclusion evaluation in progress:
    • Conclusion
      Services first, democracy later.It is now later!
    • Sunshine 2.0 Draft Indicators
      "Your" Government/Democracy Page
      How request information via FOI
      Accountability Information - The Transparency Ten Pack
      Open Data Initiative
      Document Register/Info Catalog
      Elected/appointed governance body clear on home page and Elected Officials List
      Appointed Officials and Bodies
      Election Information
      Council Member/Mayor Site Section
      Council Member/Mayor E-Newsletter or Blog
      E-Response Tool - E-Petition Receiver
      Help us pick the top ten!
      Public Meeting Calendar, Agenda, and Minutes
      Public Meeting Documents
      Webcasts - Live and On-Demand
      Performance Data
      E-Transparency System
      311/Web Comment Form/General E-mail Inbox
      Online surveys and polls or requests for comments on reports or proposals
      Policy Pack - Response, Community Engagement, Social Media Use
      Online Exchange with Public (External Tools)
      Online Government Engagement (Government Managed)
      Online Features
      Community Links Section
      Site Search
      Content Management System with Web Feeds
      E-Updates Services
      What's New/What's Popular - Automated
    • Further Information
      As part of Participation 3.0 we are:
      Convening and working to “move the field”
      Plotting a “Locals Online” roll call webinar
      Working with League of Women Voters on “Sunshine 2.0” guide for local evaluation of govs online support for democracy
      Working with on “DemocracyMap”
      Really pushing inclusion in online civic engagement
      Developing next generation partnership proposals by 4Q
      Steven Clift
      @democracy on Twitter
      Slides also available from: