How can local authorities use technology and data to deliver better public services and harness social media for better interaction with citizens?


What would a digital champion do for your authority?

Yesterday I gave a speech based upon LGiU’s recent Going where the eyeballs are report at the GovDelivery User Conference – #GovD11 on Twitter. One of the recurring issues that came up throughout the day was the lack of clarity across departments as to how to make digital technology work best throughout a whole local…

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What journalists can learn about online engagement from politicians

This article originally appeared on the BBC’s College of Journalism website. Journalists can learn a great deal from some politicians in terms of engagement, collaboration and co-production. With more than 1.1 million Twitter followers, 51,500 Facebook ‘likes’ and 1,000 YouTube subscribers, Cory Booker, the mayor of Newark, New Jersey, provides a great illustration of a local politician…

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Interview with DCLG comms boss George Eykyn

About 3 months ago I posted that I would be attempting to revive some of old journalism skills by conducting an interview with George Eykyn, DCLG’s Director of Communications. In the interview, I wanted to learn about the priorities of the department’s e-Newsroom, hear how they’re incorporating new media tools and techniques into their content…

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Residents online: opportunities for councils?

I was greatly encouraged by the research published by Networked Neighbourhoods late last year. I’ve written about it here and referred to it in many presentations and surgery sessions I’ve had with councillors. Their work showed how local, citizen-run websites bring social benefits to residents and the potential for co-production and public sector savings. I…

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Should councils be buying Ipads?

UPDATE: A story in today’s (7/9/12) Telegraph, and most other papers, reports that 50 Ipads were claimed on expenses by MPs in the last year. I wrote this blog arguing that councils should be investing in technology for councillors and officers in July last year – I’m interested to know if opinion has since changed.…

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Linking localism and the phone hacking story

This article was originally published by Total Politics. It isn’t just immigration, public services and housing. The coalition’s localising policy informs the debate about the media too, as we explore the tension beaten localisation and cosmopolitanism With each twist and revelation the News International phone hacking scandal takes on a greater life as a political event in and…

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Lower costs but the same service

Local authorities could save between 10 and 20 per cent of their expenditure on energy, telephony and solicitors simply by procuring differently. This is the conclusion of a White Paper released by Opera Solutions last Friday. I was initially sceptical about the papers focus, though the figure for savings seemed very accurate. I am very…

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