How do we solve a problem like gov2.0?
Had a great evening tonight discussing how government can embrace the opportunities of web2.0 with a bunch of interesting people – including ministers, senior officials, entrepreneurs and IT providers.
But the fact that we were even talking about it, and the fact that the group of people around the table all had a pretty sophisticated view on the subject, was to me a major step change. Twelve months ago I doubt we would have even been having the conversation at all.
Ideal Government will be posting a summary of the discussion shortly, and I don’t want to abuse their hospitality by stealing their thunder. So here are just a few thoughts that chimed with me:
- A real recognition that innovation doesn’t have to cost a lot but we just need to just try things. I’d add that we also need to ensure that the good stuff that is already going on is identified and surfaced so we can learn better from each other.
- A feeling that incumbent IT providers have little to gain from promoting free, open source (market leading) collaborative tools as it threatens their business models. Must admit I hadn’treally given much thought to this before but it certainly feels right.
- We need to recognise that government won’t always be best place to deliver innovation around public services or information. We need to be prepared to cede control and create the environment for others to act as intermediaries or have access to our data so they can create value from it. This is crucial, we have enough to do just improving our basic services online and not be distracted by the cool stuff (I’m regularly guilty of this, new betas are sooo seductive…).
Thank you Ideal Government for hosting the dinner. The more conversations people have, the more often, the better.