Thursday, 17 November 2011

Gov 2.0 Conference - Canberra October 2011

A bit of background: Gov 2.0 (Government + web 2.0) is all about Government moving towards a more transparent, open culture. A recent taskforce made several recommendations – most of which the Australian Government agreed to. This has led to a drive towards increased engagement with the public: seeking input to agency policy and strategy, uptake of social media (or web 2.0 technologies) by agencies to help support this and increased openness and sharing of Government information/data and processes.  

My summary of some of the slides and presentations:

·         Nicholas Skytland, Director - Open Government Initiative, NASA – amazing!!! Great presenter, he and the team have created a culture of innovation and collaboration at NASA. The slides don’t really convey the power of his talk but some of them have interesting facts and quotes (tweeting astronauts etc). They do a lot of crowd sourcing where they ask the public (amateur star gazers) to help them identify stars and planets. They have found that putting scientific questions out into the public domain often provides a correct answer or solution faster than their scientists could. Watch this amazing concept drawing.

·         John Sheridan, First Assistant Secretary Agency Services, Australian Government Information Management Office good to hear what AGIMO and the government is doing and planning for the future. PSI = Public Sector Information. John's blog post on the event

·         Chris Beer, IT Develop Manager, Department of Regional Australia, Regional Development and Local Government – interesting concept – Connecting services, data and people by location in real time.....

·         Patrick McCormick, General Manager, Online Collaboration and Citizen Engagement, Department of Justice Victoria – another great speaker, this Vic Gov department are also doing fabulous things with social media and open data. Again some of these slides won’t make much sense without the commentary but some are interesting. Their internal social media policy video is a great example of transparency and sharing resources, it is available on YouTube with many other government departments adapting it for their use.

Andrew Schatz, Senior Lawyer, AGS Media – a lawyers cautionary words on using web 2.0 and open access to government information. Need to balance risk and benefits.

Rachel Spalding, Assistant Commissioner Policy, Office of the Australian Information Commissioner – need to balance open access to information and privacy.

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