Now that CityCampMN and Give to the Max Day are behind us, I (Steven Clift) can focus intensively on preparing for a ten day speaking trip across Europe. This all started with an invite to participate in the World Forum and then others stepping forward to sponsor additional stops and gatherings. I am grateful.
These wonderful invitations provide an opportunity to both share lessons from our inclusive civic technology work and synthesize some “it really matters” trends combined with big big questions challenging us to ensure that open government/civic technology/e-democracy actually make democracy BETTER and fundamentally embrace all by engaging new voices.
For the next week via my Democracies Online Newswire (and other online spaces) and @democracy Twitter accountÂ you will see me reaching for examples and reactions – I fundamentally believe that the intelligence is in the network, but sometimes it needs the right questions to spark an outpouring of insightful conversation.
- Nov. 25 – Tallinn, Estonia -Â Inspiration Seminar: “How to promote open governance Estonian muninipalities and cities?” (Google Translated) – Original in Estonian, RSVP HereÂ – My speech:Â Open e-governance and citizen participation at the local level – trends and examples of the world
- I start about 11 minutes in, in English
- Nov. 26 – Helsinki, FinlandÂ – E-Participation in Finland Workshop – Video Playlist – My speech: “Toward New Voices? Open Government and Civic Technology Meet Democracy and CommunityÂ (video)” Also note the interesting slides from my Finnish government hosts.
- Nov. 27 – Strasbourg, France – Residence-based participation: a new reality of modern democracy – World Forum pre-conference event – I’ve been asked to moderate a workshop on “Participatory Democracy in an Intercultural Society: Contribution of Foreign Residents to Community Building” and share a few minutes on our Neighbors Forum work to fully engage immigrant communities in St. Paul Also see Council of Europe Podcast 2013: Rewiring democracy for disadvantaged communities for a one-on-one interview
- Nov. 28-29 – Strasbourg, France – World Forum for Democracy – Lab 15 Digital Local Democracy – I am a “discussant” to react and ask questions. Session videoÂ – Lab 15. Video interview with Society 3.0
- Neighbours Online – Nov. 30 – London, United Kingdom -Â Neighbours Online: Connecting All, Building CommunityÂ – In-depth Seminar – in Kingston-upon-Thames to support efforts in NorbitonÂ – Based on content from here andÂ here.
- Dec. 2 – London, United Kingdom – New Voices and Civic Technology: A Micro-UnconferenceÂ – Slides – In collaboration with Lobbi
This trip is sort of a “back to the future” experience for me. Prior to my Ashoka Fellowship in 2006 and grant support from the Ford and Knight Foundations, I used to use speaking and consulting to support E-Democracy’s then all-volunteer network. One of my goals with the embryonic New Voices Working Group exploration is to develop funded programming that will bolster E-Democracy’s convening role that remains informed by cutting edge online civic technology work in the field like our BeNeighbors.org effort. We see this as a grounded one-two punch for the future of democratic engagement online.