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Proprietary Lions and Bears in the Civic Commons Marketplace

Editor’s Note: This is a guest post from CC Advisor and former New York State CIO, Andrew Hoppin (@ahoppin). We strongly believe that Civic Commons is a community-driven platform, and we not only welcome but encourage dialogue on how to make it most effective as a resource. If you have an opinion on any of [...]

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Codifying Innovation in City Government

The following is a guest post from Logan Kleier, the Chief Information Security Officer of the City of Portland, OR.  Welcome, Logan! – A stagnant U.S. economy continues to affect the fortunes of city governments. According to a September 2011 report by the National League of Cities, cities have experienced their fifth straight year to [...]

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2012: Open Innovation for Government

As we turn the calendar to the new year, we’d like to take a moment to reflect on what we’ve done here at Civic Commons over the past year, what we’ve learned, and where we’re planning on heading next. It’s been a busy year for us. While the Civic Commons initiative began, slowly, as an [...]

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New York City Bus Tracking: Procuring for an Open Architecture

Real-time bus tracking is one of civic technology’s easier calls. No one likes guessing when next bus will come: “Do I need to run for it?”, “Do I have time to duck into that corner store and get a newspaper?”, etc. So people immediately grasp the benefit of being able to ask their smartphone where [...]

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Learning the way to government – My Fellowship experience

Code for America Fellow Michelle Koeth wrote a great blog on her fellowship experience and about how she came to spend her fellowship with us here at Civic Commons. As I was packing up my work notes, thumb drives, and books a few weekends ago to fly back home, and consequently being flooded with memories [...]

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Open Data: Bringing Down the Barriers to Innovation

Today, representatives from dozens of countries are coming together at the United Nations in New York for the Open Government Partnership. They will discuss shared commitments to making government more accountable, efficient, and participatory. (See their lovely overview video below.) As I believe open data will need to be a centerpiece of that effort and [...]

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Developing a Lean, Agile Procurement Guide

At Code for America, we’re encouraged to release work product often – what the techy entrepreneur crowd terms an iterative, lean, agile development process. The net result forces you to embrace mistakes, rather than be in denial about them. In this way, work product is available, even if it is in an imperfect state, to [...]

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NYC’s Tech During the Hurricane: Stats and Stories

As Hurricane Irene has now passed through the east coast, the most common terms I’ve heard in response sound something like “overhyped” and “underwhelming.” With that lens, however, we risk missing an opportunity to take stock of what I think was a watershed moment in the Gov 2.0 movement.

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A Hackathon for Everyone

One of the recurring questions about app contests and hackathons is to what extent they create sustainable civic projects. The Summer of Smart series seems to take this challenge head on: it offers as an award a shot at a GAFFTA residency, providing not prize money, but a space to work and pursue their projects in the fall. As a Code for America fellow who gets support to be a civic hacker, obviously I love this idea…

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Why We’re Building a Civic Commons — And How You Can Be Part of It

Walk down any major street in any city in the world and you’ll pass by hundreds of pedestrians — and, let’s be honest, more than a few drivers — typing into smart phones. Each of these individuals holds in one hand more computing power than the entire NASA space operation that delivered men to the moon and back in 1969.

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