Tonight I got to hang out with a nice bunch of Gov2.0 aficionados and activists at an Open Gov West
meetup at Twist in Belltown. (As an aside, Twist has stunning views of the Sound and an all night happy hour menu). The happy hour was organized by Sarah Schacht (@SarahSchacht)
, the woman behind Knowledge as Power
and the Open Gov West conference. It was a great opportunity for those of us who attended the conference to gather and continue our connections. There was also a designated half hour to hear reports back on the ideas and projects that surfaced at OGW. Unfortunately, I have an evening class on Mondays and missed the reports back. But, I did have great conversations with a number of folks. One of the people I met was Rob Hoen (@rhoehn
) who works at IdeaScale
), a company I’d never heard of before.
Apparently, IdeaScale is a platform that — similar to Digg — let’s users rate ideas so that the best, or at least most popular, rise to the top. And it’s being used in a number of Open Government initiatives. The Obama administration implemented
IdeaScale when it asked the public
How can we strengthen our democracy and promote efficiency and effectiveness by making government more transparent, participatory, and collaborative?
This nifty crowdsourcing tool is being used in a variety of arenas, not just for the pubic sector. However, I was impressed with the various OpenGov projects using IdeaScale. Here is the list from their website:
Throughout Wiki Government, Beth Simone Noveck emphasizes the importance design of technology plays in creating opportunities for government to tap the knowledge and expertise of the public. For the most part, there are not effective mechanisms in place for goverment to take action on the thousands of emails and letters constituents send in. Noveck calls for the design of systems that lets users rate ideas, thus allowing the best to bubble to the top. This is exactly what IdeaScale is designed to do and why it’s now on my radar.
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