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Tag Archives: Open Data

Help Showcase the Power of Open Data at the Accela Connect Hackathon

Mark Headd
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Accela Connect is a four-day event in early March that will bring together developers, business partners, customers and Accela staff to discuss ways that we can strengthen the civic technology ecosystem and create new links between governments and those that they serve. You can read more about this event in a previous post on the Accela blog by Ken Sawtelle, Director of the Accela Center of Excellence. As part of the event, we’re holding an open data hackathon. The Accela Connect Hackathon will include civic technologists and developers and will focus on building new data visualizations using real government open data from Accela customers housed in the CivicData platform…. Continue reading

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Using Social Media for an Open Government: 7 Tips to Get You Started

Megan Lunetta
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Social media can be a powerful tool for the government to listen to their citizens and for citizens to interact with their local government. It is a force to help build relationships, drive engagement and enhance agency reputations. Government agencies are using social media more and more to interact with citizens and local businesses in their community. Here are 7 tips to help get your agency started on social media: 1. Quality trumps quantity. You don’t need to be on every social media channel, so pick one or two to focus on and go from there. Spreading yourself too thin will not help your agency take advantage of building your reputation online…. Continue reading

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5 Government Technology Trends to Watch in 2015

Megan Lunetta
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There’s no denying that technology helps you deliver services faster—giving you the ability to improve your civic operations. With an ever-changing technology landscape, municipalities are pressured to transform and adapt quickly. As the evolution in technology and government grows in 2015, we not only need to evaluate trends, but also understand what makes sense for your city and your citizens. Here are the top five local government technology trends to check out in the coming year: 1. Platform technology gives you flexibility when solutions can be built faster and specific to your agency needs. With Platform as a Service (PaaS) expected to gain 40% annual growth through 2017, government agencies are jumping on board to gain the advantage of a one-stop shop…. Continue reading

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Discussing the Real Value of Open Data with State, City and County Leaders and the Sunlight Foundation

Mark Headd
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On September 29th I had the pleasure of participating in a panel discussion at the NASCIO annual conference on the value of open data. Entitled “Open Data: Is the Value Real?,” the panel also included: Dale Hartman, IT Service Delivery Manager, King County Elections Washington Carolyn Parnell, Chief Information Officer, State of Minnesota Barbara L. Cohn, Chief Data Officer, New York Office of Information Technology Services Emily Shaw, National Policy Manager, Sunlight Foundation During our talk, we had a chance to dive in deep on the real value of open data for governments. One of the most encouraging takeaways for me was that the vast majority of attendees at this year’s NASCIO annual conference understood what open data was,… Continue reading

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Guest Blog on PBS MediaShift: Open Data Beyond the Big City

Mark Headd
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The below is an excerpt of my guest blog on PBS MediaShift. You can read the full post here. Big cities, like San Francisco, are more likely to have adopted open data than smaller cities. This is a problem, says Headd. Photo by Thomas Hawk via Flickr and used here with Creative Commons license. “The future is already here — it’s just not evenly distributed.”–William Gibson. The Economist, December 4, 2003 The last time I heard Tim O’Reilly speak was at the Accela Engage conference in San Diego earlier this year. In his remarks, Tim used the above quote from William Gibson — it struck me as a pretty accurate way to describe the current state of open data in this country…. Continue reading

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The Accela Civic Platform: Trust, Love, Creativity

Maury Blackman
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At Accela, our company values of Trust, Love and Creativity drive everything we do. Though we don’t outwardly talk about these values frequently, they inform and support the way we behave internally as well as how we interact with customers, partners, developers and citizens. Because our beliefs and values are so important to us and everything we do, I wanted to take a moment to describe to you how we are living out these values. We believe that engagement makes all the difference, and we make engagement easy by building bridges between citizens and government. To take it one step further, how does being a platform provider fit in with our corporate purpose of building a better democracy through engagement?… Continue reading

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Guest Blog from Buildingeye | Referendum for a Dream: Why Data Standardization Is the Next Evolution for U.S. Cities

Matthew Gonzales
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The private sector has always led the race in technological advancement, usually leaving government agencies and city municipalities decades in the past. However, one of the few places where government entities have been pressed forward in this area is for defense applications. Yet collaborative technology partnerships continue to move forward—and even in the past few years, we’ve seen how companies like Accela and governments have been working together in mitigating disasters. Appallicious has a disaster assessment dashboard to help citizens in disaster situations and are working directly with FEMA. DigitalGlobe was recently able to help the U.S. military move their assets in place during the massive flooding in Colorado and even the California wildfires this past year.Through such a powerful partnership,… Continue reading

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Guest Blog from Appallicious: The Case for Comprehensive Open Data Legislation

Yo Yoshida
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On October 17, 1989, the Loma Prieta earthquake struck the San Francisco Bay Area, killing 63 people and injuring nearly 4,000 residents. The quake also caused an estimated $6 billion in damage and displaced over 12,000 people. This year marks the 25th anniversary of the earthquake, and though we don’t know for sure when the next “big one” will hit, we now have access to resources and tools to better prepare and recover from disasters like these. At the White House last week, Appallicious unveiled one of these new tools during a disaster technology event — the Disaster Assessment and Assistance Dashboard, or DAAD. This new online tool creates a “shareable economy” to aid in economic stability post-disaster…. Continue reading

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On Open Data, Platforms and Public/Private Partnerships

Jeff Stiles
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Mark Headd and I were asked by Professor Peter Robertson to share our perspectives at the upcoming Academy of Management Conference. Unfortunately, our Engage Conference precludes us from attending in person, so we filmed a brief video to send on our behalf. We had a chance to discuss the Accela Civic Platform and CivicData.com and to share our thoughts on: Challenges and opportunities agencies face when building open data How standardization is essential to fostering innovation The value of open data to agencies, developers and citizens How public/private partnerships foster innovation How a platform approach is essential for scale How civic engagement and collaborative governance improve communities These things are inextricably linked…. Continue reading

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Guest Blog from Buildingeye | Accela Engage 2014: Startup Pioneers of Open Data to Converge In San Diego

Matthew Gonzales
The Open Data movement is primed to fundamentally shift the paradigm on how citizens interact with their governments. This will be the primary focus for the upcoming gathering of government officials and tech startups: the Accela Engage 2014 conference in San Diego, CA from Aug 4-8. As of now, state and local governments have been utilizing antiquated data management technologies, which have historically made it difficult for the average citizen to access public information. However, this may not be the case for much longer. For example, San Francisco, CA, is one city that’s paving the way towards a more efficient, convenient, and open government via the city’s Entrepreneurship-In-Residence program…. Continue reading

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