This week, the National Academy of Public Administration’s Collaboration Project released a resource on stakeholder engagement that I hope will be useful to Govloopers. Tools for Online Idea Generation: A Comparison of Technology Platforms for Public Managers compares ten web-based idea-generation platforms, many of which we have used for various projects, with the intent to help leaders select a technology that fits the specific needs of their stakeholder-engagement project. It complements the Online Dialogue Brainstorm Guide, which we developed several months ago to provide public managers with questions to consider when structuring an engagement project.
Each of these resources is based on a principle that has guided our work: that engagement is essentially an issue of leadership, not technology. Identifying your challenge and what you need from engagement is single most important step in “doing” opengov, and everything else should align around that.
The guide is embedded below and is also available on our website. Let me also say that the Academy and the Collaboration Project are technology-neutral: this guide is not intended as an endorsement of any particular product or vendor. We’ve based it on our first-hand experience with many of the platforms, supplemented by information available on the vendors’ websites. This field is evolving quickly, so we intend this to be a living resource that will be periodically updated to feature new tools and new functionalities. We appreciate any feedback you have, including suggestions of other technologies we’ve missed.