The Gospel of Gov 2.0

Leading government into the land of wikis, blogs and social media isn’t easy….an article by Jill R. Aitoro that recently appeared in the October issue of Government Executive is right on target. In the face of the staggering statistics on the number of people on the web and the incredible potential to “crowd-source” ideas (instead of ahem…”out-sourcing” them to contractors…present company excepted), government is STILL facing the old ways. She says we are caught in the middle, between our Presidential leadership to forward the ideals of Open Government and the skepticism of those in leadership positions who think that an open forum means a loss of control. Her recommendation? Keep the pace slow and steady. Never give up. Try. then Try Again…..then…..try one more time.

Also view the Open Gov video by Delib, a UK-based e-democracy doing great work around the world in the field of policy consultation, debate and crowd-sourcing.

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This is so true. We still use all of the old top-down methods in-house.
I see so much excitement and innovation happening in pockets in the Federal Government, but the path is rocky and the road is still quite narrow. The skeptics are right..there will be a certain “loss of control”. The OpenGov process will be based on a democratic model, where everyone gets an equal voice. It is not a model where a few people at the top have the authority to make or override all key decisions.

Deb Forman

Thanks Megan. I also just saw another post on Katherine’s site about Clay Shirky’s Here Comes Everybody book. I’m ordering it for myself and asking my organization to get a few copies for managers to read….kind of like, who stole my cheese!

Mary Groebner

It’s a paradigm shift between hierarchical and flat organizations. I mean, if internally, your organizational culture is all about ‘go thru the right channels’ and those channels are very structured, limited, controlled – then the social media world has to be frightening.
But for those of us who worked within those kinds of cultures and worked side-by-side regardless of the structure around us – it’s exhilarating.

Deb Forman

You are so right. It’s that balance that’s hard to achieve sometimes. The motivation for the hierarchy to buy in must be done in the way the hierachy works, not the way social media works. Kind of like a Vulcan mind-meld……;-)!