Many of today’s most significant city initiatives couldn’t be carried out without the help of open data. For instance, one open source software app helps citizens locate and shovel out fire hydrants when they are covered with snow. Hawaii adapted the same app to use for testing tsunami sirens and Seattle will use it to clean leaves out of storm drains. Behind these innovations is open data, a more technical approach to government data with obvious advantages.
This week, as our country and the world remembers and reflects upon the tragic attacks of 9/11, many will find it enlightening, as we have, to report on a community volunteer project that truly defines the spirit and strength of the citizens of New York and global supporters. Now entering its 11th year, the New Yorkers for Parks (NY4P) Daffodil Project, has grown a huge volunteer base of individuals and organizations dedicated to beautifying their neighborhood open spaces.
Innovative new city marketing techniques are being employed by local governments around the world to aide in the transformation of their city into a thriving center of tourism, culture and development. More and more municipalities see the need to capitalize on their community’s assets and create good public spaces in order to attract more investment, business, residents and visitors.
Three “democracy startups” are setting the ball rolling for citizens to be highly savvy voters, receive balanced political perspectives, and take matters into their own hands as they run for political office.