Category Archives: Digital media

Examples and good practices of how digital media are being used to communicate public policies in the EU, USA and elsewhere.

The benefits of open data

Where is the money going?

recovery.gov mapAs part of its response to the economic crisis, the US federal government approved the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act – a stimulus package worth $787 billion (subsequently increased to $840 billion) – in February 2009.  The Act provides financing for tax cuts and benefits, “entitlement programs” (such as unemployment benefits) and federal contracts grants and loans.

But where exactly is the money going?  Continue reading

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Digital media, USA

How can we tell better stories about the EU?

Microsoft’s Chief Storyteller

Steve ClaytonI met this week with Steve Clayton, “chief storyteller” at Microsoft.

A few years ago, Steve was working at the company’s offices in Reading.  His job involved talking with startups and small tech companies based in London.  Many of the people he met viewed Microsoft as dull and conservative.  This clashed with Steve’s sense from within the company that a lot of his colleagues were actually doing some pretty cool and innovative things.

Continue reading

3 Comments

Filed under Digital media, EU, Fellowship Programme, USA

Participatory budgeting – “giving ordinary people real power over real money”

US cities like New York, Chicago, San Francisco, and Seattle have all experimented in recent years with initiatives designed to give local people a direct say in decisions on public spending.  These initiatives are inspired by the concept of participatory budgeting, which was originally developed in the Brazilian city of Porto Alegre.

Continue reading

8 Comments

Filed under Digital media, EU, USA

American students quiz MEPs

Debating Europe Schools

One of the things I love about digital media is their capacity to bridge geographical divides, establishing new connections between people who would be unlikely to cross paths in the offline world.

So I was delighted to be able to offer my students here at the University of Washington in Seattle an opportunity to put questions directly to Members of the European Parliament.

Continue reading

2 Comments

Filed under Digital media, EU, Fellowship Programme, USA

Govloop – a knowledge network for government

Govloop logoAccording to the small world theory, we are all six connections or less away from anyone else on the planet.

I’ve been putting this theory to the test during my stay here in the USA by trying to connect with various people who are doing interesting things with digital media.  One of the people I was keen on talking to is Steve Ressler, founder of Govloop (a social network for government employees).  When I spoke a couple of weeks ago to Washington State’s social media network, it turned out that one of the members of the network knows Steve and he put us in touch.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Digital media, USA

What can we learn from Nike?

Nike entranceEmployees cycle past Nike Lake and Ronaldo Field on cruiser bikes.  Executives emerge in jeans and trainers from buildings named after sports stars.  In many ways, Nike’s picturesque campus on the outskirts of Portland seems about as far from the European Commission’s headquarters in Brussels as you can imagine.  And yet, when it comes to digital media, companies like Nike face similar challenges to many other big organizations.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Digital media, Fellowship Programme

Is email dead?

In a context of declining resources and increasing demands, what digital tools can help people to work most productively in an organization like the European Commission?  How can we convince colleagues (and external partners) to change their habits and to engage with new solutions for online collaboration?  These were some of the questions that emerged during a recent “Digital Competence Day” for Commission staff organized by our human resources department.  I was pleased to be able to participate in some of the discussions from my current base in Seattle via video link, Twitter and Yammer.

Continue reading

8 Comments

Filed under Digital media, EU, USA

Cyprus and the European public sphere

The Spring Quarter started this week at the University of Washington.  I will be teaching a class on the European Union where we will be looking, in particular, at how digital media are changing the EU.  One of the issues we will be grappling with is something that often comes up at conferences and discussions in Brussels – the elusive “European public sphere”.

1 million tweets mention Cyprus

As I have been finalizing the preparations for my class over the last couple of weeks, it has been fascinating to observe the online interactions around the economic adjustment programmes for Cyprus that were discussed by Eurozone Finance Ministers on 15 and 25 March.  According to topsy.com (see graphic) there have been over 1 million tweets mentioning Cyprus during the last month.  The peaks in traffic on Twitter clearly correspond to the two meetings of Eurozone Finance Ministers.

Continue reading

3 Comments

Filed under Digital media, EU, Fellowship Programme

Collaboration top priority for government communication

OneBusAway

Using the “One Bus Away” app – a frequent site at bus stops in Seattle!

Collaboration, customer service and mobile are the three top trends in government communication to look out for in 2013, according to a survey of US state, county and city governments published on 19 March 2013 by GovDelivery.  The survey stresses the need to streamline collaboration between government agencies in order to improve efficiency and reduce costs, as well as the growing demand for digital engagement opportunities from citizens:

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Digital media, USA