Twenty-one European Cities Advance in Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Mayors Challenge Competition to Create Innovative Solutions to Urban Challenges

Press Release: “Bloomberg Philanthropies today revealed the 21 European cities that have emerged as final contenders in its 2013-2014 Mayors Challenge, a competition to inspire cities to generate innovative ideas that solve major challenges and improve city life, and that ultimately can spread to other cities. One grand prize winner will receive €5 million for […]

Finland opens new portal launched to support transparency and interaction

Epractice:” The Ministry of Justice (of Finland) has launched a new portal,, which gathers together information from various democracy-related sites and news in the field of political decision-making. The site thereby makes it easier for citizens to find the best channels for participation and influence, and increases government transparency and interaction. summarises the […]

Can Government Play Moneyball?

David Bornstein in the New York Times: “…For all the attention it’s getting inside the administration, evidence-based policy-making seems unlikely to become a headline grabber; it lacks emotional appeal. But it does have intellectual heft. And one group that has been doing creative work to give the message broader appeal is Results for America, which […]

Crowdsourcing medical expertise in near real time

Paper by Max H. Sims et al in Journal of Hospital Medicine: “Given the pace of discovery in medicine, accessing the literature to make informed decisions at the point of care has become increasingly difficult. Although the Internet creates unprecedented access to information, gaps in the medical literature and inefficient searches often leave healthcare providers’ […]

Paying Farmers to Welcome Birds

Jim Robbins in The New York Times: “The Central Valley was once one of North America’s most productive wildlife habitats, a 450-mile-long expanse marbled with meandering streams and lush wetlands that provided an ideal stop for migratory shorebirds on their annual journeys from South America and Mexico to the Arctic and back. Farmers and engineers […]

Passage Of The DATA Act Is A Major Advance In Government Transparency

OpEd by Hudson Hollister in Forbes: “Even as the debate over official secrecy grows on Capitol Hill, basic information about our government’s spending remains hidden in plain sight. Information that is technically public — federal finance, awards, and expenditures — is effectively locked within a disconnected disclosure system that relies on outdated paper-based technology. Budgets, […]

In defense of “slacktivism”: The Human Rights Campaign Facebook logo as digital activism

Stephanie Vie in First Monday: “This paper examines the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Marriage Equality logo as an example of a meme to further understandings of memetic transmission in social media technologies. The HRC meme is an important example of how even seemingly insignificant moves such as adopting a logo and displaying it online can […]

How Can the Department of Education Increase Innovation, Transparency and Access to Data?

David Soo at the Department of Education: “Despite the growing amount of information about higher education, many students and families still need access to clear, helpful resources to make informed decisions about going to – and paying for – college.  President Obama has called for innovation in college access, including by making sure all students […]