Open Government: Are We There Yet?

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How open data and social media can work together to solve some of government's big problems. (Presented to the California Democratic Party Internet Caucus at Stanford University, Feb. 5, 2011.)

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Open Government: Are We There Yet?

  1. 1. Open Government: Are We There Yet? 1.0…2.0…3.0…4.0… Presented by Sarah Granger To the CDPIC Stanford University Feb. 5, 2011
  2. 2. What’s wrong with government? <ul><li>Closed door decisions </li></ul><ul><li>Corrupt officials </li></ul><ul><li>Poor access to government information </li></ul><ul><li>Extreme distance from decision makers to ordinary citizens </li></ul><ul><li>Slow to change </li></ul><ul><li>Immense layers of bureaucracy and paperwork </li></ul>
  3. 3. How can new media help solve some of these problems? <ul><li>Open government movement (#opengov) => transparency through technology </li></ul><ul><li>Government embracing social media “gov 2.0” (#gov20) => civic engagement online </li></ul>
  4. 4. Commitment to Transparency
  5. 5. Open government in action <ul><li>White House Open Government Initiative – enhancing WH transparency & information sharing, Data.gov </li></ul><ul><li>Open Government Directive for executive branch departments </li></ul><ul><li>External projects like Sunlight Foundation’s OpenCongress & MAPLight.org </li></ul><ul><li>Apps for Democracy – Washington, DC </li></ul><ul><li>Transparency Camps around the country </li></ul><ul><li>DataSF.org for data, apps, SF311.org for info, services </li></ul>
  6. 6. Government & Social Media <ul><li>Internal & external communications, i.e. State Dept. Intranet & robust social media engagement </li></ul><ul><li>Crowd sourcing ideas from citizens, gauging public interest & need - #NSTIC (National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace) – Ideascale </li></ul><ul><li>Building new networks within government – events and discussions with stakeholders in various departments </li></ul>
  7. 7. Direct engagement <ul><li>Government agencies & officials on Twitter (over 3300 nationally) </li></ul><ul><li>City mayor @gavinnewsom </li></ul><ul><li>Secretary of State @dbowen </li></ul><ul><li>Governor @schwarzenegger </li></ul>
  8. 8. Examples <ul><li>In Action… </li></ul>
  9. 9. Liberating the Data
  10. 10. Researching Bills
  11. 11. Mapping Crimes
  12. 12. Saving Lives
  13. 13. CA: Building from the Foundation <ul><li>Secretary of State’s Office Online </li></ul><ul><li>Secretary of State on Twitter </li></ul><ul><li>Voter Information Guide Online </li></ul><ul><li>Custom election sites based on the data </li></ul>
  14. 14. Electionalert.us
  15. 15. Campaigning vs. Governing Online <ul><li>Overarching goals of reaching constituents are the same – subtle differences in outreach and style </li></ul><ul><li>Must still stay on message </li></ul><ul><li>Need to continue authentic dialogue </li></ul><ul><li>Communicate less often (not begging for money) </li></ul><ul><li>More limits on what officials can say & do online </li></ul><ul><li>Maintaining a sense of community is key </li></ul>
  16. 16. Where do we go from here?
  17. 17. The Devil’s in the Data: Clean, Accurate, Accessible
  18. 18. More Sharing <ul><li>Within government: between agencies, cities to states, cities to cities </li></ul><ul><li>Exchanging ideas and experiences </li></ul><ul><li>Cross-sector: public to private & vice versa – business, tech, military, civilian, NGO, educational </li></ul><ul><li>Speeding up the process </li></ul><ul><li>Removing barriers to innovation (i.e. USA Application Programming Interface) </li></ul>
  19. 19. More Information <ul><li>GovLoop communities </li></ul><ul><li>Sunlight Foundation projects </li></ul><ul><li>Articles – GovFresh, techPresident, Federal Computer Week, etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Fedscoop videos </li></ul><ul><li>Gov 2.0 Radio </li></ul><ul><li>Personal Democracy Forum calls & conferences </li></ul><ul><li>O’Reilly gov 2.0 projects </li></ul><ul><li>Local data camps & transparency camps </li></ul>
  20. 20. More Participation <ul><li>Greater crowd sourcing & communication tools – from the White House to the town council </li></ul><ul><li>More government officials genuinely active and collaborating online </li></ul><ul><li>Re-education of government employees and staff; gradually introducing non-native technology users to social media </li></ul><ul><li>Natural turnover toward when the majority of government decision-makers understand technology </li></ul>
  21. 21. What’s right now in government? <ul><li>More decisions are made and explained in the open online </li></ul><ul><li>Corrupt activities can be more clearly detected by tools from the nonprofit world </li></ul><ul><li>Access to government data and information is becoming easier every day </li></ul><ul><li>By crowd sourcing and engaging directly through social media, the people are becoming closer to decision makers </li></ul><ul><li>Rapid response is becoming a reality </li></ul>
  22. 22. All we need now…
  23. 23. And a little patience.
  24. 24. Questions? <ul><li>Sarah Granger </li></ul><ul><li>@sairy </li></ul><ul><li>www.publicedge.com </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul>

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