Sunshine 2.0: Using Technology for Democracy


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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

  1. 1. Sunshine 2.0:Using Technology in Democracy<br />Steven Clift<br />Executive Director<br /><br />
  2. 2. Government by Day, Citizen by Night - 1994<br />
  3. 3. Sunshine 2.0<br />Vision. Demand. Goals. Measures. …for Local Democracy Online<br /><br />
  4. 4. Government Online –<br />April 2010 report brings fresh data:<br />48% of internet users have looked for information about a public policy or issue online with their local, state or federal government<br />46% have looked up what services a government agency provides<br />41% have downloaded government forms<br />35% have researched official government documents or statistics<br />33% have renewed a driver’s license or auto registration<br />31% use online platforms such as blogs, social networking sites, email, online video or text messaging to get government information<br />23% participate in the online debate around government policies or issues, with much of this discussion occurring outside of official government channels. <br />
  5. 5. Outline - Example<br />1. What government wants to tell us.<br />2. What government must tell us. What we feel we need to know.<br />3. What we want to tell government.<br />4. What we need to “hear” from each other publicly in the context of government decisions.<br />5. Community collaboration, problem-solving, and inclusive engagement<br />
  6. 6. 1. What government wants to tell us.<br />
  7. 7. A home page says 1,000 words.<br />Minneapolis wants so: <br />Share news it has decided is important<br />Highlight “results”<br />Use social media<br />Provide non-English information<br />Promote services strongly<br /> Minneapolis must:<br />Post salaries of top three paid employees for 90 days on home page<br />
  8. 8. 2. What government must tell us. What we feel we need to know.<br />“public=online”? – Transparency campaign by the Sunlight Foundation<br />Accountability information.<br />
  9. 9. Timely Access to Information<br />Key e-service –e-alerts so you can ACT on information before it is too late!<br />
  10. 10. Public Meetings On-Demand<br />Linked video, documents<br />Also see PublicMeetings.Info<br />
  11. 11. Reusing Data – Personalized to You<br />
  12. 12. Budgets and Spending<br />South Carolina state agencies must put spending information online<br />Comptroller promoting local government efforts<br />
  13. 13. 3. What we want to tell government<br />Communication. Understanding the “will of the people” in government.<br />
  14. 14. Contact Me!<br />Old and new clash online – “Current agendas are posted in front of City Hall in King Plaza on the elevator walls …”<br />
  15. 15. Sorting Policy Input from Service Queries<br />Menlo Park, CA<br />“Community Engagement Feedback”<br />Both citizen and government can track responses<br />
  16. 16. DemocracyMap<br />Can you “Enter address,” see every government entity that serves you and who specifically represents you (and how to contact them)<br />The United States lacks an “open data” set on ALL government jurisdictions, districts, associated websites and elected officials.<br />Huge “local up” market failure<br />Online working group:<br /><br />
  17. 17. 4. What we need to “hear” from each other publicly in the context of government decisions<br />Imagining online public spaces and hearings?<br />
  18. 18. Great Councilmember Page, But Disconnected from Two-way<br />
  19. 19. Tip Toe in the Facebook<br />Real-names giving some governments confidence to create Facebook Pages with open comments<br />Why not elsewhere?<br />
  20. 20. 5. Community collaboration, problem-solving, and inclusive engagement<br />
  21. 21. This page left intentionally blank.<br />Let’s make this happen.<br />
  22. 22. Community collaboration<br />Using Technology for Community Building Webinar<br /><br />E-Democracy Neighbors Forums<br /><br /> – New Zealand!<br />Action Alexandria<br /><br />
  23. 23. Democracy Home Page<br />Let’s be citizen-centric online in government.<br />
  24. 24. Democracy Home Page<br />How process works, effective participation<br />Decision-making information<br />Who represents you?<br />Good tools for elected officials<br />Local laws and rules<br />Local elections<br />Budgets, spending, and taxes<br />Accountability<br />Ethics, Freedom of Information, Transparency data, your rights, etc.<br />
  25. 25. Democracy “Home”<br /> – A world leading local e-democracy city (UK)<br />
  26. 26. Democracy “Home”<br />Palo Alto giving it a try with “Know Zone”<br />Secrecy image?<br />
  27. 27. Next Generation Local Democracy Features<br />More examples!<br />
  28. 28. Gathering Public Input<br />Santa Cruz – UserVoice<br />Amherst – Localocracy<br />Manor “Labs” Texas<br />
  29. 29. Freedom of Information Requests<br />UK shares results online <br />
  30. 30. Deep Transparency<br />E-mail sent to all Palo Alto City Council members before meetings<br />Data sets in Washington DC<br />
  31. 31. Really Deep Transparency<br />Post-Communist Estonia appreciates “public=online”<br />Tallinn’s Document Register, National X-Road provides secure access to private data held on you<br />
  32. 32. Local Open Government Directive<br />From CityCamp Colorado came an idea – let’s create generate bottom up support for local open government<br />Modeled after Federal Open Government Directive<br /><br />
  33. 33. Community-wide Support for Democracy Online<br />Webinar preview:<br /><br />
  34. 34. The “default” local online news commenting experience is …<br />Most people see, expect public conflict.Sharp contrast with private social networking.<br />
  35. 35. “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<br />
  36. 36. Neighbors Online –<br />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.”<br />14% read a blog dealing with community issues at least once in the last year<br />13% exchanged emails with neighbors about community issues<br />7% say they belong to a community e-mail list (more women)<br />6% communicated with neighbors by text messaging on cell phones<br />5% joined a social network site group connected to community issues<br />3% followed neighbors using Twitter<br />Read full report<br />Lower income, Latino, rural need to be included<br />Analysis on blog.<br />
  37. 37. CC:, E-Lists, Placeblogs, Social Nets <br />CC: E-mail <br />The simple sheet of paper passed around at National Night Out …<br />E-mail Discussion Lists<br /> forums, Google/YahooGroups, DC nhoods, Brooklyn parents<br />Placeblogs<br />Cornerstone of “citizen journalism” online, sometimes “watch dog” protest sites<br />Local Social Networks<br />Facebook Pages/Groups, Ning Sites, etc.<br />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<br />
  38. 38. City Hall<br />Local Media<br />Coverage<br />Personal<br />Networks<br />“Secondary<br />Networks”e-mail forwards<br />Civil Society<br />Creating Public Space - Issues Forums<br />Ctizen #1<br />Arts Group<br />City Councilor<br />Mayor<br />Reporter<br />Candidate<br />New Resident<br />Issues Forum<br />GroupServer e-mails posts web view<br />Citizens<br />Local Biz<br />Subscribe once<br />Commitment secured<br />Post via e-mail/web<br />Librarian<br />Citizen 500<br />Advocacy Group<br />Neighborhood Leader<br />Police<br />Forum Manager<br />
  39. 39. Neighbor Issues Forums Stories<br />Somali community – 20 missing youth to crosswalks<br />“Little Mekong” and BoaLee’s lessons<br />Powderhorn Cinco de Mayoviolence<br />Community garden<br />Chickens in Bemidji<br />Leech Lake Native American majority rural forum<br />Inclusion evaluation in progress:<br />
  40. 40. Conclusion<br />Services first, democracy later.It is now later!<br />
  41. 41. Sunshine 2.0 Draft Indicators<br />Information<br />"Your" Government/Democracy Page<br />How request information via FOI<br />Accountability Information - The Transparency Ten Pack<br />Open Data Initiative<br />Document Register/Info Catalog<br />Representation<br />Elected/appointed governance body clear on home page and Elected Officials List<br />Appointed Officials and Bodies<br />Election Information<br />Council Member/Mayor Site Section<br />Council Member/Mayor E-Newsletter or Blog<br />E-Response Tool - E-Petition Receiver<br />Help us pick the top ten!<br />Decision-Making<br />Public Meeting Calendar, Agenda, and Minutes<br />Public Meeting Documents<br />Webcasts - Live and On-Demand<br />Performance Data<br />E-Transparency System<br />Engagement<br />311/Web Comment Form/General E-mail Inbox<br />Online surveys and polls or requests for comments on reports or proposals<br />Policy Pack - Response, Community Engagement, Social Media Use<br />Online Exchange with Public (External Tools)<br />Online Government Engagement (Government Managed)<br />Online Features<br />Community Links Section<br />Site Search<br />Content Management System with Web Feeds<br />E-Updates Services<br />What's New/What's Popular - Automated<br />
  42. 42. Further Information<br />As part of Participation 3.0 we are:<br />Convening and working to “move the field”<br />Plotting a “Locals Online” roll call webinar<br />Working with League of Women Voters on “Sunshine 2.0” guide for local evaluation of govs online support for democracy<br />Working with on “DemocracyMap”<br />Really pushing inclusion in online civic engagement <br />Developing next generation partnership proposals by 4Q<br />Steven Clift<br /><br />@democracy on Twitter<br />612-234-7072<br />Links<br /><br /><br /><br />Slides also available from:<br /><br />