Government Technology and the Center for Digital Government
Announce Top 25 Public Sector Innovators
SACRAMENTO, Calif. – February 23, 2011 - The “Top 25 Doers, Dreamers and Drivers” for
2011 have been named by e.Republic’s Government Technology magazine and Center for Digital
Government. Winners are chosen based on their use of technology to improve government
performance, boost efficiency and strengthen citizen services. Featured in the March issue of
Government Technology, they come from state and local government, academia and the private
and non-profit sectors.
“The need to innovate has never been greater,” said Steve Towns, editor of Government
Technology. “That’s where members of our 2011 Top 25 shine. This year’s Doers, Dreamers
and Drivers showed the courage and vision to address long-standing problems and transform
government operations in a tough environment. We congratulate the 2011 Top 25 and
acknowledge them for their service.”
The Top 25 Doers, Dreamers and Drivers:
Dick Aldridge, CIO, Charles County, Md.
Claire Bailey, CTO, Arkansas
Ben Berkowitz, Co-Founder, SeeClickFix
Terry Bledsoe, CIO, Catawba County, N.C.
Joe Bruno, Commissioner, New York City Office of Emergency Management
Mike Byrne, National Incident Management Assistance Team Leader, FEMA
Barry Condrey, CIO, Chesterfield County, Va.
Steve Emanuel, CIO, Montgomery County, Md.
Eric Frost, Director, San Diego State University Immersive Visualization Center
Lev Gonick, CIO, Case Western Reserve University
Louis Patrick Hill, Vice President of the Senate, U.S. Virgin Islands
Phyllis Kahn, State Representative, Minnesota
Ronn Kolbash, Former Director, Ohio Shared Services
Ellen Miller, Co-founder, Sunlight Foundation
Patrick Moore, Former CIO, Georgia
Gavin Newsom, Lieutenant Governor, California
Bill Oates, CIO, Boston, Mass.
William Pelgrin, President and CEO, Center for Internet Security
Dugan Petty, CIO, Oregon
Kumar Rachuri, CIO, Ohio Office of Budget and Management Stacy Dean Stephens, Co-Founder, Carbon Motors
Harold Tuck, CIO, San Diego County, Calif.
Steve Vigilante, Deputy CIO, New York City Department of Education
Paul Wormeli, Executive Director Emeritus, IJIS Institute
The Center for Digital Government The Center for Digital Government is a national research
and advisory institute on information technology policies and best practices in state and local
Government Technology is about solving problems in state and local government through the
smart use of technology. Drawing on the experiences from across the country, Government
Technology, features best practices, and fosters communities of interest around improving
service delivery and transforming government operations. http://www.govtech.com
Government Technology and the Center for Digital Government are divisions of e.Republic, a
national publishing, event and research company focused on smart media for public sector
Director of Corporate Communications
Ben named Top 25 Public Sector Innovators by Government Technology and the Center for Digital Government
Wednesday, February 23, 2011 - By Ben Berkowitz - No comments
Government Technology and the Center for Digital Government
Saturday, February 19, 2011 - By Ben Berkowitz - No comments
A few weeks ago we stabilized the connection to the newest implementation of open311 in SF and it seems to be having some impact.
Here's a list of the recently fixed issues reported to SF311 on SCF: http://seeclickfix.com/san-francisco/issues/closed
Now all we need to do is spread the word. Many users are reporting using the new SCF iPhone app available here and we're getting really good feedback: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/seeclickfix/id322000552?mt=8
If you're in SF and want to get out the word about this new way of connecting to City Hall and reporting problems in SF you can embed the widget on your site: http://www.seeclickfix.com/widget or share this post with your friends.
Friday, February 18, 2011 - By Ben Berkowitz - No comments
In its first month of use at city level 316 issues have been reported in Raleigh with nearly 75% of them fixed.
We want highlight again the amazing collaboration between Government, Media and Citizens that's working to make Raleigh a better place to live.
Here's the story on WRAL
- By Ben Berkowitz - No comments
SeeClickFix Plus is a hot ticket this month with an entire Country in Asia, a City in Australia, a Council District in Southern California and 5 other cities signing on.
Newnan Georgia got SCF Plus up and launched within 15 days of reaching out to us and they're getting some local press for the efforts.
Read the press release here!
Saturday, February 12, 2011 - By Ben Berkowitz - No comments
Yesterday, with the undeniable assistance of the Internet, a dictator was removed from office in Egypt after 30 years. What's truly is amazing is that overthrow has now led to a new type of engagement in Egypt.
Check out the clean-up efforts in Tahrir Sqaure which is leaving Cairo "cleaner than ever"
We're not surprised but are tremendously excited that the world can see this displa/y of frustration leading to engagement.
Reporting Potholes really can be the Gateway Drug to Civic Engagement
Friday, February 11, 2011 - By EJ - No comments
Thecityhowl.com was created by philly.com for citizens of philadelphia to post problems in their neighborhoods. Each week, reporters from thecityhowl.com publish highlights from their investigations of the issues posted.
The SeeClickFix widget is being used by online newspapers such as thecityhowl.com to help reporters investigate issues in local communities.
Another local issue identified and investigated thanks to the SeeClickFix widget!
- By Ben Berkowitz - 1 comment
Guest post by By Tom Grubisich
It's great that Chicago Alderman James Cappelman wants to see SeeClickFix integrated into how the city government connects with the community it serves. It’s also great to see other local governments in communities of all sizes adopting policies on how to embrace social media.
But the governments and media have to do a lot more to build connections where both citizens and their leaders put the “self" in self-government.
|Roman Forum, from 'The Roman Forum,' Francis Morgan Nichols, 1877|
Imagine if the ancient Roman Forum had been a place where the only people congregating, debating and proposing were the citizenry. But the Roman Forum was much more. It was where local officials, and even the august senators, went to answer in-person complaints about grain shortages, lack of clean water and other issues. Even the emperor would occasionally stand face to face with a dis-satisfied crowd and answer their grievances.
We need digital equivalents of Roman Forums in every community in America, especially in
these difficult economic times when local governments -- all 80,000 of them -- are trying to do
more with less, when the citizenry wants government to hold down the budget but also provide
better and more services.
The answer lies in more intense but smarter engagement -- both by the citizenry and their public
servants. That engagement, first and foremost, requires more facts and less ranting.
Digital community platforms can spur this missing engagement through what I call “civic
networking.” I'm a founder of the community-based startup LocalAmerica.com that will soon
launch a website and smartphone app – LoveToLiveIn.com – that are designed to drive this
results-driven engagement. It will start with our "Livability Index" that will rate a community's quality of life overall and in 20-plus specific categories, like schools, transportation, housing and recreation as well as hard-to-quantify but still important areas like community vision and civic spirit. The initial ratings will come from performance metrics, but we will balanced what databases spit out with human responses – from "local experts" we recruit and the "wisdom of the crowd" -- our collective users.
The ratings, we think, will give the community -- citizenry and their public servants -- a meeting ground where they can start to forge solutions that will preserve what's working and fix what's not.
But there are many other communities and their struggling governments. They all need smarter engagement that brings together citizens and public servants, sooner rather than later. Wouldn't it be great if all community-based social media used their special resources to pitch in and make it happen.
Thursday, February 10, 2011 - By Kayla Vandervort - No comments
Within 7 days, Karri Mollet, the Executive Assistant to the Commissioner of the Department of Public Works, closed the issue stating that the potholes were patched by a DPW crew. Karri went further on to explain the diligent roadwork that the DPW has been accomplishing with this year's crazy weather.
With the help of users like William, Karri, and SeeClickFix, the community of Islip can expect their roadways to be ready for the upcoming spring season!
- By Ben Berkowitz - No comments
If we could give the Councilman an award we would as well but the North Carolina Center for Education beat us to the punch.
Bonner first started using SeeClickFix Plus in the fall and since then has brought on all of his fellow Council members, the Mayor and the City. The local news site WRAL was so excited by the prospect of enabling open communication between citizens and their governments that they agreed to front the 400/month cost for the City's use of the professional issue tracking and customized smart phone and reporting features.
Here's more on the award:
"Bonner Gaylord -- Outstanding Public Servant
Raleigh City Councilor Bonner Gaylord represents District E, where he has been a lifelong resident. He is on the forefront of utilizing technology to connect citizens with their government, implementing the “SeeClickFix” program, an online application that allows community members to alert city officials and neighbors to areas in need of improvement -- from potholes to unsafe intersections.
Gaylord has also been a local leader on bridging partisan divides, joining the “No Labels” movement that seeks to improve the tone of political discourse and find common ground."
- By Ben Berkowitz - No comments
Wednesday, February 9, 2011 - By Ben Berkowitz - No comments
Don't let us blog you down with philosophical waxing on why we like green living.
Check out their site and the implementation here: http://www.growwny.org/get-involved/seeclickfix
Tuesday, February 8, 2011 - By Ben Berkowitz - No comments
James Cappleman is running for Alderman in the 46th Ward in Chicago. He also is receiving publicly documented concerns from his constituents via SeeClickFix.
On February 3rd Cappleman announced that he would like to see SeeClickFix integrated into the City of Chicago's business process. While the city can pay for SeeClickFix's pro tools we encourage the City to set-up free watch areas for all of their departments based on keywords.
Cappleman said. “Besides making responses to city services more efficient and
timely, it saves the city money by streamlining the issue straight to the department which
handles this matter. It’s time for our city to move with the times and use technology to improve
the quality of life of our residents.”
We agree with James and decided to help the city of Chicago to take the next step. On the City's website we found lots of great public information like email addresses for city departments: http://cityinfo.cityofchicago.org/PhoneBook/PhoneBook?page=DepartmentWorkGroups
Over the last 20 minutes we created watch areas filtered by appropriate keywords to send alerts to different divisions of Streets and Sanitation. The recipients of the emails, who inevitably know their responsibilities better than us, will be able to tailor those keywords a little more to fit their responsibilities.
Try reporting a pothole or a snow issue in Chicago and let us know the results.
As an example here is the watch area for Graffiti removal: http://seeclickfix.com/watch_area/14782 (We recommend only reporting the graffiti you really want removed...Chicago has some pretty nice street art if you ask the SCF team.)
You can create a watch area here: http://seeclickfix.com/chicago/watch_areas/map
Also, test out what Cappleman is preaching by Downloading the new app here
Check the out Alderman Cappleman's release here: http://jamesforchange.org/docs/SeeClickFix%20press%20release.pdf
Saturday, February 5, 2011 - By Ben Berkowitz - 1 comment
Online Community Manager
Location: New Haven, CT
SeeClickFix uses the power of public and distributed communication via the web to bring citizens closer to their local government and each other. Through partnerships with local media, governments and social user features SeeClickFix has spread all over the United States and is starting to spread internationally. The SeeClickFix platform reaches millions of eyeballs each month and consists of content contributed by hundreds of thousands of users…and the party is just getting started.
As a community manager you will be tasked with cultivating and fostering a strong online community that is respectful to one another and works collectively at a local level to improve their communities off-line. Moderating and guiding local communities online to make a real difference in their community offline will be your main focus at SeeClickFix.
This position is for full-time employment, on-site at our office in downtown New Haven, CT.
What We're Looking For
The right person for the job will be patient and optimistic and know how to translate that ethic into written and verbal form. A strong community manager will be able to turn an upset user into a user for life. While you don’t have to have worked at a start-up previously you need to be prepared to work at a start-up. What does this mean? Start-up culture and SeeClickFix culture is one of dedication to the community over everything else. You must be prepared to carry weight for others and take on tasks outside of your typical responsibilities when needed. You need to be ready to be as important to the organization as the founders. SeeClickFix’s hierarchy is flat and everyone in the office is an equal decision maker. Community managers are involved in conversations about features and have a vote on matters related to the platform.
Most importantly we want you be really really ridiculously smart and fun. We also really want you to care about civic engagement and stronger neighborhoods.
The ideal community manager will have:
• Really Really Ridiculously good written and verbal communication skills
• Ability to tackle small sometimes redundant tasks quickly and painlessly
• A strong like for twitter and other social media but not the kind of love affair where you think it’s the answer to everything.
• A strong like for SeeClickFix to the extent that you think it’s the answer for everything
• Ability to write creative and interesting blog posts about sometimes mundane things like reporting potholes
• Understanding of civics and local government structure
• Planted a tree in their neighborhood or at least picks up trash when they see it on the ground
• A sense of humor in the office and with SeeClickFix users
• Used SeeClickFix and has an understanding of the way the tool works
• A bachelor’s degree or be Bill Gates or Mark Zuckerberg
Bonus Traits for brownie points:
♣ Some knowledge of html or design tools
♣ Fast hands on the Ping Pong table
♣ Likes bicycles more than cars
♣ A user profile on SeeClickFix with over 200 civic points
How We're Different
Join a growing startup team that is connecting 100,000's of citizens to each other and their local Government international and currently in 12 different languages. Our data feeds are distributed by hundreds of media partners who use the data to inform readers and hold government accountable. SeeClickFix is a revenue generating and is backed by Venture funds founded by the founder of Ebay, Pierre Omidyar and the Prophet of Silicon Valley, Tim O’Reilly
Come join us in remaking the user interface to government. Power to the community!
We believe treating our employees right is important to doing great work. Here are the benefits we're offering right now:
♣ Competitive Salary
♣ Equity — Everyone who works here owns a bit of the company's success
♣ Conferences — Continue your learning at conferences and we'll pick up the tab
♣ Health insurance benefits
♣ Three weeks paid time off
Please email your resume and cover letter to Ben@SeeClickFix.com
Wednesday, February 2, 2011 - By Ben Berkowitz - No comments
Who's coming to We Media NYC April 6?
If you seek meaning from the events in Egypt, then you should know Mona Eltahawy. Ms. Eltahawy has been a correspondent in the Middle East and North Africa for Reuters and other news organizations. But it is on her blog and through Twitter that she has become an authority to which Western media have turned. Meet her at We Media NYC on April 6, where she'll join a brilliant cast of digital daVincis who help us understand the human experience in the digital world. Participants will include:
Craig Newmark, founder of Craigslist
Scott Heiferman, founder of Meetup
Diana Wells, president of Ashoka
Mona Eltahawy - Independent Journalist
Roo Rogers, co-author of What's Mine is Yours/The Rise of Collaborative Consumption
Steve Rubel, SVP and head of insights for Edelman PR
Steve Rosenbaum, founder of Magnify Networks and author of Curation Nation
Stowe Boyd, social philosopher and web anthropologist
Ben Berkowitz, founder of SeeClickFix
Melinda Wittsock, founder of NewsIT and Capitol News Connection
Rex Sorgatz, Fimoculous
Corvida Raven, SheGeeks
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