FOI Advocate Blog

The NFOIC open government blog is a compendium of original concepts and analysis as well as ideas, edited excerpts and materials from a variety of sources. When the information comes from another source, we will attribute it and provide a link. The blog relies on the accuracy and integrity of the original sources cited; we will correct errors and inaccuracies when we become aware of them.

For Advocate posts prior to July, 2011, visit http://foiadvocate.blogspot.com/.
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May 12, 2014 9:52 AM

The open government movement has become super-charged over the last year. Largely in part to the people and organizations on the front lines. At the 2013 Code for America Summit held in San Francisco, California, I got a chance to speak with some of the people who are volunteering their time, finding better ways to make government work for us, and bridging the gap for citizens to access and participate in their government.

I asked them some questions to gather insight into why we’re experiencing more interest in civic hacking and civic participation. I also wanted to hear from Code for America brigade captains and fellows as well as civic community leaders to get a better understanding of what makes a great Code for America project.

Next, I focused on how these folks strive to create a culture of innovation in government both great and small. They shared some excellent wisdom with me. Like, Chase Wilson, from Code for Kansas City: he says the three keys to successful government innovation are hunger, awareness, and permission. Or, like, Abhi Nemani, from Code for America, who advises citizens to just keep asking questions. Continue>>>
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February 8, 2014 11:00 AM

Three fellows from Code for America – the “Peace Corps for Geeks” – arrived in Lexington today to begin a 10-month partnership focused on improving neighborhood quality of life through more effective and interactive city government.

Winning a highly competitive selection process, Lexington is one of just 10 governments nationwide to get the opportunity to participate in Code for America this year.

Lexington was selected for the 2014 fellowship because “the city’s leadership is forward looking, committed to open government and innovation,” said Luke Norris, government relations director of Code for America. He added that Lexington has “a track record of engaging with its community to help solve problems.” Continue>>>
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January 23, 2013 1:39 PM

From CNET News:

The U.S. government is hoping that hackers can help make the nation a better place.
 
The White House announced ... that it will kick off a "National Day of Civic Hacking" on June 1 and 2 and is inviting those with tech know-how to use their coding skills to improve communities across the country.
 
"Civic Hacking Day is an opportunity for software developers, technologists, and entrepreneurs to unleash their can-do American spirit by collaboratively harnessing publicly-released data and code to create innovative solutions for problems that affect Americans," the White House wrote in a statement.
 
The National Day of Civic Hacking was put together by a coalition of organizations, companies, and government agencies that includes Random Hacks of Kindness, Code for America, NASA, Department of Labor, and the U.S. Census Bureau.

 

January 26, 2012 9:09 AM

From Tech President:

San Francisco’s a town with a lot of mobile apps that can help its residents to navigate everyday life in the city. Routesy provides real-time transit information; Mom Maps helps both residents and tourist parents alike quickly locate kid-friendly places to hang out; Zonability helps make local zoning rules more accessible.

[...]

Earlier this month, Mayor Ed Lee announced that the city is partnering with digital age civic group Code for America to create an “accelerator,” where young programmers will be given the opportunity to peer at the innards of city government, and to imagine commercially viable solutions that could help San Francisco, as well as other city governments, to be more efficient. Google is seeding the project with $1.5 million, and the Kauffman Foundation is also providing an unspecified amount.

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