Editor's note: This post originally appeared on the California Civic Innovation Project blog.
Last Tuesday I co-hosted an event at New America with the Open Technology Institute
and the Asset Building Program
that explored civic innovations in policy, community organizing, technology, and government. “Civic Innovation, Can It Save Our Democracy?
” was the first of a series of events focusing on ways that civic innovation changes how people relate to one another and to government.
This event was really the jumping off point for a broader conversation about civic innovation. To support our thinking about the field, last year CCIP interviewed twenty practitioners and put them in a virtual conversation to tease out the expanse of the field. The report, The 2050 City: What Civic Innovation Looks Like Today -- and Tomorrow,
shaped our thinking of civic innovation less as a concept or thing, and more as a process with multiple actors and enablers. This ecosystem, which is how we began to talk about it, is made up of government, civic groups, residents, foundations, academics, and civic hackers.
Civic innovation is more than just a compilation of projects; it can be a process as well, inspiring institutional change. This is an important point to consider because the spread of civic innovation throughout communities and government will require a culture shift that reframes current processes.