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Changing Civic Engagement for Good: Accela Construct App Challenge Winners

Mark Headd
From voting to volunteering, civic-minded citizens have been committed to improving our society since its inception. But far beyond joining town hall meetings and handing out flyers, emerging technology in the hands of brilliant developers provides us with new and exciting ways to bridge the gap between citizens, businesses and the government agencies that serve them. To help accelerate that innovation, Accela hosted its 2014 Construct App Challenge, which called on our best civic-minded developers to build apps that help create more informed and productive communities. Participants were able to submit in two categories, New Civic Apps and Existing Civic Apps, and the top three apps in each category received prizes totaling $25,000;… Continue reading

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What Does the Civic Platform Mean to Me?

Jeff Stiles
civic platform
You’re going to hear a lot about the Accela Civic Platform. It’s core to our mission of bridging the gap between government and citizens and is designed to help you engage—with citizens, across departments and jurisdictions, and with developers looking to create solutions to help you build better communities. Today, Accela customers describe their environments in a manner of alphabet soup: AA, ACA, AMO, ESME, FIDs and the like. Over the years, Accela Automation has evolved to include a great many capabilities that are, in turn, part of the solutions that you’ve deployed to solve core government business problems in managing land, licensing, assets, and public health &… Continue reading

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Looking for the Next Great Civic Startup: The Accela Civic App Challenge

Mark Headd
At Accela, we’re committed to finding ways to leverage the talents and ideas of civic entrepreneurs and open data hackers to benefit the governments we serve. We believe that fostering the creation of new civic startups has enormous potential to benefit public sector agencies, and we’re committed to finding ways to do this. That’s why we were thrilled several weeks ago to launch the Accela Civic App Challenge. The ProblemThe biggest challenge facing governments in adopting new civic technologies is the absence of an easy way to incorporate new solutions into their existing IT infrastructure. Creating a framework in which civic hackers and entrepreneurs can build smart new apps that can easily be adopted by governments has proved daunting and has caused some in the civic technology community to worry about the movement’s future viability…. Continue reading

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Guest Blog from Town of Framingham, MA: HTML5 App Development with the Accela API

***Editor’s Note: Today’s post comes from Alan Holt, Manager of Data Services for the IT department in the Town of Framingham, Massachusetts.*** The other day I was asked by my director to take a survey about what motivates me to do my job well here in the Town of Framingham, Massachusetts. I was supposed to pick my top 3 motivators. Of course I started to check off MONEY, then paused and spent some time reflecting on what really does motivate me. When I handed in the survey, money did not even make the cut. I was surprised to realize my top choice was “Interesting Work.” I am the sole Accela support person and implementer at our site…. Continue reading

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