Weekly Round-up - September 23, 2011
- First, a hearty congratulations to Steve Ressler, aka Mr. GovLoop, on his impending nuptials. Here is a blog post for people to wish him well and offer advice on being a married man.
- Open Government Community Chides DC. The municipal government of Washington, DC, suspended, and then reinstated the Twitter feed of DC EMS. Lon Walls, DC EMS communications director, gave his reason in a very twitter-friendly quote: "Social media is for parties. We ain’t givin’ parties." Local Gov Chat, a site run by Mike Rupert, a former employee of Washington, DC, quickly compiled a selected list of all the emergency-response organizations that tweet. Bowing to pressure from the open government community, the DC EMS twitter stream is again live and unfiltered.
- More on Social Media and Disasters. The Congressional Research Service has produced a report, "Social Media and Disasters: Current Uses, Future Options, and Policy Consideration," that discusses exactly that. I've started a series of blog posts that will explore the same topic.
Dr. John Bordeaux
- Is it worth considering a policy that cedes cognition and accountability to killing machines?
- Open Government partnership launches in NYC.
- The importance of sense making - a reflection on a career in the halls of the CIA.
- GSA concerned about the impact of reduced e-gov funding on the cloud.
- With the release of a new Administration Action Plan for Open Government, http://fcw.com/articles/2011/09/20/white-house-transparency-goals-global... ">President Obama promotes transparency at the United Nations.
- Spotlight on cyber:
- -- DOD to continue http://www.nextgov.com/nextgov/ng_20110919_6730.php?oref=rss?zone=NGtoday ">program of sharing cyber threats with defense industry -- DHS may expand to other sectors.
- -- OMB: continuous cybersecurity monitoring can replace the need for voluminous and static security reporting.
- -- Cybersecurity as Greek mythology.
- Status of the Open Government Initiative. The White House released a self-assessment status report of the Administration’s existing Open Government initiatives, which was followed by the release of a series of new Open Government initiatives – such as the launch of a new White House “e-petitions” portal -- and a briefing prior to President Obama’s United Nations visit where he touted a global version of Open Government, as well, calling it “the essence of democracy.” So much for naysayers who claimed the initiative was dead.
- Status of the Campaign to Cut Government Waste. Vice President Biden headlined a Cabinet meeting last week, urging the Cabinet to cut wasteful spending on conferences. This week, the Justice Department’s Inspector General releases a 148-page report decrying spending of up to $16 per muffin and $1 an ounce for coffee at conference meetings. OMB, with lightening speed, then issues a memo to agencies to curb conference spending.
Meanwhile, a new survey shows citizens think 51 percent of all government spending is wasted.
- A Cool Crowdsourcing Story: Solving an AIDS problem. Here’s a story in Discover magazine of how computer gamers solved a scientific problem that had been puzzling experts for years. All that time in the basement playing computer games has paid off!
- GSA Dialogue to Improve Federal Website. GSA has launched a 2-week online conversation with web experts and the public called the National Dialogue for Improving Federal Websites. It runs until Friday, Sept. 30. You can access it at: http://www.usa.gov/webreform/dialogue.shtml
According to GSA: “The purpose is to allow people to submit and vote on ideas for improving various aspects of improving federal websites, such as: content, search, usability, accessibility, social media, multilingual content, and online services. The “.gov Task Force” will review the ideas and consider them as they develop a National Web Strategy and make recommendations for streamlining federal websites, strengthening federal web policy, and improving citizens' experience with federal websites.”
GSA says a number of prominent web experts will serve as discussion catalysts, to help spur the conversation, such as Jakob Nielsen, Steve Krug, Craig Newmark, Vanessa Fox, Danny Sullivan, and Annetta Cheek.
The Business of Government Radio Show: Jay Hoffman
The Business of Government Hour features a conversation about management with a government executive who is changing the way government does business. The executives discuss their careers and the management challenges facing their organizations. Past government executives include Administrators, Chief Financial Officers, Chief Information Officers, Chief Operating Officers, Commissioners, Controllers, Directors, and Undersecretaries.
Jay Hoffman is the Director of Program Analysis and Evaluation at the U.S. Department of Energy
Each week, The Business of Government Hour interviews government executive who are changing the way government does business. The show airs four times a week on two radio stations in the DC Metro Area. If you can't wait, though, we also put it online. You can also search our audio archives for your favorite interview.