Ctrl+Alt+Delete for Britain

Yesterday I attended Reboot Britain, this year’s NESTA – funded successor to 2gether08.  The event looked at “the challenges we face as a country and the new possibilities that a networked, digital world offers to overcome them” (from http://www.nesta.org.uk/reboot-britain/).

We are all familiar with the problems – and with many of the solutions.  But there was also the odd new discovery, namely (for me) MixedInk, the White House’s tool for understanding population responses to policy.  This was mentioned three times (as I tweeted here) so seemed a strong trend of how Britain might follow the US lead (this was frequently compared to Tom Steinberg et al’s work for the number 10 petition site) in using technology to aid political engagement.

Highlights for me included One Click Orgs (which I previously mentioned in this blog post), who gave us a sneak look of their alpha site.  There are some very interesting implications for membership organisations – namely, the ability for any member to very easily suggest a change to the constitution (just by selecting from a drop down list) which can be voted on, and the ability to transfer and take back proxy votes with relative ease and security. While this is a technological change only, it also seems to have profound implications for the balance of power within a membership structure.

The event also saw the launch and first interactive game of Social by Social, which is (I think) a really simple and accessible way to understand the implications for the third sector of emerging social technologies (take a read here).   There is a section [disclaimer – written by me] focussing on membership organisations. You can read it here; it will also find its way to this site at some point.

Videos of the larger sessions should be available online in the next week or so (most probably here or here) if you want to see what happened.

Last updated at 11:46 Tue 07/Jul/09.
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Katherine

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Update:

Future Gov have now posted Emer Colman's excellent presentation (and not just because of the Wire reference) on the future shape of local government. Take a look here. Slides 2 and 7, both comparing 'traditional' to newer, more communicative, forms of government, are particularly interesting/useful.

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