“Civic engagement doesn’t happen by default. Technology can help government leaders reach community members.” So argues Stephen Goldsmith, Daniel Paul Professor of the Practice of Government and Director of the Innovations in American Government Program at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, in a recent article on Government Technology:
Democratic governance, in other words, does not furnish an engaged public by default: It is the charge of government leaders to call it into existence. The leadership of the New York City Police Department has taken this lesson to heart, leveraging technology to augment the constructive potential of the public voice.
Goldsmith looks at the tools the NYPD has used over the course of two decades to make public safety data more transparent and accountable, and notes how advances in crowdsourcing technology such as IdeaScale “have demonstrated their capacity to create new “publics” in which citizens are not only heard, but also empowered to participate in the production of their own civil society.” You can read more here.
Contributor: Brian Stewart, Pepperdine School of Public Policy, MPP Candidate ’17.