”What Do Change-makers Have in Common”
Andrew Rasiej, Founder, Personal Democracy Forum
Next Generation of Government Summit 2012
Andrew stated his presentation by speaking about the difficulties of change, and particularly, changing from within a system. Andrew shared a story about when he ran for office in the early 2000’s, “I ran not because I believe I would win the election, but because I believed in ideas,” Andrew continued, “Ideas take time. Change is hard, it takes time, but there are new tools and new technology that give us a new way of thinking about change.”
Andrew shared numerous examples of entrepreneurs, and the importance of their work and the new tools that are facilitating change, using examples such as Linus Tovalds (Linux), Craig Newmark (Craigslist), Rachel Chong (Catch a Fire), and Yancey Strickler (Kickstarter). Andrew highlighted many other resources, Andrew paid particular focus to government. One example was data.gov, which Andrew states has 390,000 data sets uploaded to data.gov. Another example was the use of Exit Strategy, which citizens developed based on public data from the NYC metro. This app provides clarity for people on how to best exit a metro station in New York.
Andrew closed out his presentation talking about the importance of the Internet, and the connectivity of the tools. The mobile revolution has the power to transform governance, civic engagement, and holds great opportunity to solve complex problems. Andrew stated that “Citizens are out partners,” which was a really interesting take, believing that collective knowledge of citizens will transform the way government operates.
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