Phillip Smith

Weekend reading: Open Government: Collaboration, Transparency, and Participation in Practice.

As someone who's on the road a fair bit, I'm an avid Safari Books Online user (you can access some of the Safari Books Online library for free, if you have a Toronto Public Library membership). This week, I got one of those regular marketing e-mails with new books that I might be interested in, and stumbled on Open Government: Collaboration, Transparency, and Participation in Practice (Amazon link) by Daniel Lathrop and Laurel Ruma.

The Amazon overview is as follows:

In a world where web services can make real-time data accessible to anyone, how can the government leverage this openness to improve its operations and increase citizen participation and awareness? Through a collection of essays and case studies, leading visionaries and practitioners both inside and outside of government share their ideas on how to achieve and direct this emerging world of online collaboration, transparency, and participation.

And the authors' bios:

Open Government editors: Daniel Lathrop is a former investigative projects reporter with the Seattle Post Intelligencer who's covered politics in Washington state, Iowa, Florida, and Washington D.C. He's a specialist in campaign finance and "computer-assisted reporting" -- the practice of using data analysis to report the news. Laurel Ruma is the Gov 2.0 Evangelist at O'Reilly Media. She is also co-chair for the Gov 2.0 Expo.

I've thrown this onto my "bookshelf" for a leisurely weekend read. Looks like a substantial collection and a number of knowledgeable people have contributed to this (rather large) tome on the ever-exciting topic of Open Government. Reading group, anyone?

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Hi, I'm Phillip Smith, a veteran digital publishing consultant, online advocacy specialist, and strategic convener. If you enjoyed reading this, find me on Twitter and I'll keep you updated.


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