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Open Data Is Here: How Will You Bring Your Agency’s Data to Life?

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The office has been buzzing with excitement this week with the launch of CivicData.com . We’ve been hard at work to bring this to fruition. More importantly, everyone at Accela is excited about what this means for our customers. In recent months, the City of El Paso created a Garbage App with CityGovApp that increases driver productivity while enhancing citizen engagement—all from a smartphone. Civic hackers used Salt Lake City’s data to create a “Taco Cart” app, which helps citizens (and presumably inspectors) locate these mobile food establishments. We’re amazed by the sheer volume of civic-minded developers who are looking to build and deploy apps for government. Oftentimes, they don’t understand what kind of data you have. Just opening up your data can result in unexpected new ways to engage with citizens and businesses. Several agencies have already published datasets on CivicData.com. What will your data look like? In case...
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Democratize Your Data with CivicData.com

By now, I hope you’ve heard about the open data movement , and have seen how forward-thinking agencies are driving innovation by leveraging open data in hackathons and events like CityCamp Palo Alto . There are some shining examples of how open data is being used to add value and deliver services to communities. This opportunity is huge and has undeniable potential to impact governing, civic engagement and government business. But the open data movement is in its infancy, and we have a long way to go before the real value of open data begins to be realized. Honest reflection tells us that today, a small fraction of agencies are actively providing open data, it’s complex and costly for them, and there are very few implemented standards—datasets are described in very different ways. From a developer standpoint, these datasets are deployed uniquely for each jurisdiction. That makes it very difficult...
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Looking Back at Accela Engage 2013: Civic Engagement Trends and the Value of Open Data

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I’ve had a chance to reflect on Accela Engage 2013 and wanted to share a few key takeaways. It was my first year attending the conference, and I was delighted by the energy and level of active participation throughout the week. Over 450 customers representing more than 100 agencies around the world made it a priority to attend to learn about our strategy and plans, to network and to learn. First, a quick synopsis for those of you who were not able to attend this year. Our CEO, Maury Blackman, opened his keynote by showcasing the power of engagement between government agencies, citizens and businesses. Engagement was a common theme throughout the week, and is the reason we renamed our user conference Accela Engage this year. Accela CEO Maury Blackman delivers the keynote address at Accela Engage: 2013 User Conference. During his keynote, Maury discussed four key trends we’ve talked about...
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The Accela Open Data Platform: Coming Soon to An Agency Near You

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During the opening keynote at the Accela Engage conference two weeks ago, I gave a sneak peek look at the upcoming Accela Open Data Platform. It was gratifying to see how that quick peek turned into the talk of the conference. During the weeklong conference, I had numerous agencies approach me asking when they can get their hands on our new Open Data Platform. Each person who approached me had the same thing to say: “What you have created is exactly what my agency needs and solves our current open data problems perfectly.” And just yesterday, our very own Maury Blackman discussed open data on NBC's Press:Here with Scott McGrew in a segment titled “ Bringing Government Data Online .” So, what exactly is it that Accela is up to and what is our strategy when it comes to Open Data? I answered these questions during a session on Open...
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Guest Blog from Code for America | Open Data and Flamingos at Accela Engage: 2013 User Conference

Guest Blog from Code for America | Open Data and Flamingos at Accela Engage: 2013 User Conference

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Today's guest blog post comes from Code for America , an Accela partner and attendee at Accela Engage: 2013 User Conference in San Diego this week: By Ashley Meyers, Development and Engagement Manager, Code for America A year ago, when I first met Maury Blackman, CEO of Accela , and Kris Trujillo, then senior software architect (since promoted to Director of Software Development), we spoke about support for the 2013 Oakland Fellowship project . Little did I know that Accela would become a generous corporate sponsor of our 2013 programs and a partner on open data and data standards. Thanks to funding from Accela and other local match partners — including the Akonadi Foundation, the Kapor Center for Social Impact, the Donner Foundation, and Pandora — the three Oakland Fellows have thrived. Team members Richa Agarwal, Sheila Dugan and Cris Cristina now have a website in testing to streamline and open up...
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Guest Blog: Using SeeClickFix to Meet All of Your Workflow Management Needs

SeeClickFix is one of Accela's valued partners attending Accela Engage 2013. Julie Ramaccia, an account executive with SeeClickFix, shared the following details about some of the services that SeeClickFix provides: Using SeeClickFix to Meet All of Your Workflow Management Needs by Julie Ramaccia Account Executive SeeClickFix We’re excited to be at Accela Engage 2013 in San Diego and meet with Accela customers to discuss their challenges and opportunities and what we can offer. If you weren’t able to attend the conference this year, we’ve recently created a series of videos that further explain how SeeClickFix can be used to best serve your governments, cities and citizens: Departmental Management: Through our hosted CRM platform, your city can experience greater departmental organization and workflow management by routing requests to the appropriate field officer or department. View our Departmental Management video . Route Requests to Counties: Do you need to route requests to a...
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