Currently, public sector jobs are having a tough time competing with the private sector. The talented workers government needs to move forward and innovate are increasingly being snapped up by private sector companies.
How can open government improve talent acquisition and get top talent considering the public sector again? Here are just a few ways:
A couple of weeks back, during an interview with a community engagement practitioner, I asked what “engagement” meant to him, and how it differed from “participation”. His response surprised me, “as far as I’m concerned, they mean the same thing”. You just replace “engagement” with “participation” or “involvement” depending on where you are.”
I’m not sure if this quite correct. Language is important, and we usually select specific words and phrases because of their specific contextual meaning, cultural fit, socio-cultural history and a whole range of other factors...it is all too easy to fall into the trap of imagining that the way “we”, (you and me) use a particular phrase, is the same as the people sitting next to us on the bus, or across the table during a negotiation, or when we’re trying to design a process based on a shared understanding of desirable outcomes.
In total for the 4 topics, there were 156 ideas posted and 5494 votes/rankings. 2386 people were invited to participate (all members plus all conference attendees), about about 100 people actively participated. Many more watched, but didn’t jump in.
Some of the ideas NCDDers shared are things that many of us could do, like the #2 idea under the “clearly delineate our field” barrier:
“Create some clear, simple tools and infographics for describing, assessing, and bringing to life dialogue and deliberation work. Identify the good material that is out there already and make it is easy for practitioners or public leaders to use.”
And the top-ranked idea in the “lack of trust” barrier:
“Focus on D&D work at the local level, where engagement efforts are much more likely to influence decisions. Work with public leaders to build/rebuild trust in government decision by decision, from the ground up.”
The Journal of Field Actions, together with Civicus, has just published a special issue “Stories of Innovative Democracy at the Local Level: Enhancing Participation, Activism and Social Change Across the World.” When put together, the 13 articles provide a lively illustration of the wealth of democratic innovations taking place around the world.
“Civic Hacking” is the awareness of a condition that is suboptimal in a neighborhood, community or place and the perception of one’s own ability to effect change on that condition. The apps are incidental.