Beth Noveck is demanding a revolution in the U.S.—an open government revolution.
Two weeks ago, the United State’s first Deputy Chief Technology Officer (CTO) and founder of the White House Open Government Initiative spoke at TEDGlobal 2012 on the need for transparency, participation, and collaboration in government. Noveck identified our system of government as “out-of-date” and “inappropriate” for our current, interconnected world, and she suggested that we can learn from organizations using open platforms and apps in an effort to redesign our governing institutions and participate in a system of open innovation.
Noveck sees the open government revolution as dramatic and important, one that should come in two phases. First, information needs to be made open and public within networks in order to ensure that better decisions are made without the influence of monopolies. Second, participatory opportunities should be created so that decisionmaking power can be shared between officials and citizens. These two phases would put us on the pathway to creating a truly open government in which citizens share the power and create an efficient, modern, and strong democracy that helps to solve our most pressing problems.
Noveck concludes her talk with a rally for action:
The last thing, the most important thing for us to do is demand this revolution. We don’t have words really to describe it yet. Equality, fairness in the traditional sense, are not great terms yet. They’re not fun or exciting enough to get us engaged in this tremendous opportunity that awaits us. If we want to see the hopeful, exciting kinds of innovations in clean energy and education and development, if we want to see those adopted and scaled, we must all participate. Open up institutions and let the nutrients flow throughout our culture to create open institutions, a stronger democracy, a better tomorrow.