Gov 2.0 Roundup: Week of January 14

Drupal comes to Capitol Hill, on the lookout for civic innovation, and rulemaking 2.0, all in this week’s edition of the Gov 2.0 Roundup.

–If you thought the White House and Congress couldn’t agree on anything, think again. The U.S. House of Representatives announced this week that Drupal, the platform on which whitehouse.gov is built, is the “preferred web hosting environment for the House.” Cost savings, security, and the large Drupal development community were all cited as reasons for the decision. I certainly agree with that, and applaud the House for embracing open source technology.

–Civic innovation might be the next evolution of Gov 2.0, according to Alex Howard (@digiphile) over at O’Reilly Radar. Civic innovation organizations such as Code for America are combining innovative government service delivery ideas with talented developers interested in improving their communities. Alex shares a great list of civic innovation organizations. To this I would like to add Simpl, the social innovation marketplace that FutureGov and Rock Creek launched last year. (As a side note, happy third birthday, FutureGov!)

–Modernizing and improving the rulemaking process is a perennial goal, it seems. A recent report from Cornell and the Department of Transportation suggests that online rulemaking needs to make use of Web 2.0 tools to be successful. “Unless we recognize the several barriers to making rulemaking a more broadly participatory process, and purposefully adapt Web 2.0 technologies and methods to lower those barriers, Rulemaking 2.0 is likely to disappoint agencies and open government advocates alike,” said the report recently published online by the Social Science Research Network. For an example of online rulemaking that does employ Web 2.0 tools, check out the USDA Forest Service’s Planning Rule site. This is one of my favorite examples of Gov 2.0 in action.

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