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Data Driven Criminal Justice Projects Coaching Program Launches This Week: Online Mentoring to Support Public Interest Entrepreneurs

With a dramatic rise in the numbers in prison, there is bipartisan support – and a major White House push — for improving public safety while reducing incarceration and making our criminal justice system fairer. A key tool in the movement for criminal justice reform is the ability to use data to understand where problems […]

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Swipe right to fix the world: can Tinder-like tech match solutions to problems?

There is a proliferation of technology that helps us match talent with need. If privacy is protected in the process, this development could have a high impact Reprinted from The Guardian (Dec. 29, 2015) Everyday, millions of people use apps like Tinder to find a romantic match. What if governments used similar technology to match the […]

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What Citizens Can Teach Civil Servants About Open Government

Brazil’s largest city is embarking on an ambitious experiment to educate its public employees on the benefits of transparency. Reposted from Governing Magazine by Maria Hermossilla and Beth Simone Noveck An open government is one that is transparent, participatory and collaborative. But moving from traditional government operating behind closed doors to more open institutions, where civil servants […]

Hacking SkillFinder: How The World Bank’s Talent Network Can Reduce Poverty

C0-authored by Maria Paz Hermosilla In the mid-eighteenth century, Denis Diderot and Jean-Baptiste D’Alembert began publishing their twenty-eight volume encyclopedia with contributions from Enlightenment greats such as Rousseau, Montesquieu and Voltaire. The Encyclopédie endeavored to categorize and widely disseminate secular knowledge systematically in order to shift people’s thinking toward a secular Enlightenment worldview. It is […]

Participatory Democracy’s Emerging Tools

Reprinted from Governing Magazine With Arnaud Sahuguet As we explore the role of new technologies in changing how government makes policies and delivers services, one form of technology is emerging that has the potential to foster decision-making that’s not only more effective but also more legitimate: platforms for organizing communication by groups across a distance. […]

Sign Up for GovLab Academy Coaching Programs

Thanks to the generous support of the Knight Foundation, this term the Governance Lab Academy – a training program designed to promote civic engagement and innovation – is launching a series of coaching programs. Geared to the teams and individuals inside and outside of government planning to undertake a new project or trying to figure […]

#OpenData Victory: Court Orders IRS to Make Public Machine Readable 990 Non-Profit Tax Return Data

The Federal District Court for the Northern District of California ruled this week that the IRS must turn over the original, machine-readable versions of nine tax returns filed with the IRS to Plaintiff PublicResource.org. (Disclosure: I filed affidavits in the case on behalf of PublicResource and its demand to make these returns available). By law, non-profit tax […]

OpenGov Voices: Transparency is not just television

Cross-posted from the Sunlight Foundation. In 2009, Larry Lessig published a headline-grabbing piecein the New Republic entitled “Against Transparency,” arguing that the “naked transparency movement” might inspire disgust in, rather than reform of, our political system. In their recent Brookings Institution paper, “Why Critics of Transparency Are Wrong,” Gary Bass, Danielle Brian and Norm Eisen […]

From Governing: Measuring the Impact of Public Innovation in the Wild

Reprinted from my monthly column in Governing: With complex, seemingly intractable problems such as inequality, climate change and affordable access to health care plaguing contemporary society, traditional institutions such as government agencies and nonprofit organizations often lack strategies for tackling them effectively and legitimately. For this reason, this year the MacArthur Foundation launched its Research Network […]

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Oxford Internet Institute “Internet and Society Awards”

More years ago than I care to recall, I studied at Christ Church College. At that point, I came to the University of Oxford to study allied cultural policy after World War II. I was interested in the ways that each of the different post-war powers used the media of their day, ranging from film […]

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