Jason Shah: “Why I’m Excited about the GovLab”

Jason Shah reflecting on The GovLab Experiment @ his blog “: “Here are three surprising ideas I learned from my time during The Gov Lab Experiment:

  • Pairing up influential government leaders with competent technologists gets products built, and actually used. One without the other is often an incomplete equation for problems that need government participation for resolution…If we can increase the communication between people setting policies and people building products, and make it easier for developers to access government distribution channels to promote good, perhaps private, technology solutions, the better off we will be in my view.
  • Technology and data need to be used to refine solutions that academics / government leaders are aiming to craft with inquiry devoid of actual user behavior….
  • Getting more people, especially developers, simply to be aware, and invested in, improving governance is a still-untapped source of innovation….It’s not because government is hard to disrupt: every industry is hard to disrupt.It’s not because it’s not lucrative: government contracts and getting a whole city or country to use an application would be more lucrative than a lot of other markets.

    It’s not because hacking government isn’t appealing: developers love making impact.

    So, simply getting and keeping developers engaged in civic tech is limitlessly powerful.

That’s why events like The Gov Lab Experiment and others like it are so important.

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