3 Citizen Engagement Resolutions to Keep in 2018

From going to the gym to starting a new hobby, the new year brings no shortage of resolutions and goals. In 2018, commit to revitalizing public trust and building stronger communities with these three citizen engagement resolutions.

In Conversation With David Vogt

Each month, PlaceSpeak presents a Q&A with experts in public engagement and civic technology.

This month, we spoke to David Vogt, President of the Urban Opus Society, which champions smart city innovation projects involving citizen engagement and the direct benefits of data to urban lifestyles, society and culture. Dr. Vogt was originally an astronomer and maintains academic appointments at the University of British Columbia along with graduate teaching roles while focusing most of his energy on digital innovation programs and startups.

PlaceSpeak 2017 Year in Review

As 2017 draws to a close, we reflect on some of the challenges and opportunities that have emerged over the past year. PlaceSpeak continues to innovate and iterate, responding to some of the most pressing challenges facing online democracy and public participation.

With the FCC’s net neutrality ruling – and its online consultation with hundreds of thousands of fake comments – at the forefront of policy-makers and Internet users’ minds alike, it is clear that technologies which seek to undermine citizen engagement are here to stay. PlaceSpeak’s geo-verification technology was featured in Government Technology and Forbes Magazine, as well as in Government Technology’s Year in Review, for its focus on digital ID authentication, which has proven to be an effective deterrent against bots, trolls, spammers and other troubling ways of discrediting the public input process.

Customer Success: Co-Creating Solutions with Citizens

Last week, PlaceSpeak participated in the SFU Centre for Dialogue’s workshop with Valerie Lemmie (Director of Exploratory Research, Kettering Foundation): Citizens and Public Officials: Strategies for Working Together in Democratic and Complementary Ways to Fix Wicked Community Problems.

The workshop brought together government officials and community institutions who are interested in strengthening democratic engagement. Drawing upon regional and North America-wide examples, the event explored the Kettering Foundation’s latest insights into methods for better linking community voices with government decision-making, as well as opportunities to co-produce solutions directly with citizens.

Communications Manager, Mary Leong, presented a table discussion on how the District of Central Saanich used PlaceSpeak to tackle issues in Brentwood Bay, including abandoned and sunken vessels, boaters dumping their sewage and garbage into the water, accumulation of too many vessels, navigating the crowded waters safely, and a lack of parking on the streets near the docks and noise.

PlaceSpeak Featured in GovTech’s “2017 from A to Z”

We are delighted to have been included in Government Technology Magazine’s 2017 Year in Review:

“As government seeks to increase citizen engagement online, new platforms are emerging that aim to make that interaction as painless as possible. PlaceSpeak is one such tool that not only solicits useful resident feedback, but also eliminates trolls and bots that so often make the Internet unpleasant. Agencies are using PlaceSpeak to identify users based on location, ensuring that only residents who live in affected areas can weigh in on issues relevant to them.”