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Gov 2.0: Ready or not?

Don Tapscott has become something of a guru of the Web 2.0 world. A speaker, author and consultant, Tapscott focuses on business strategies and organizational transformation. His most recent book, “Wikinomics: How Mass Collaboration Changes Everything,” focuses on new Web technologies and the principles behind them, which he often calls peer production. Tapscott wrote that wikinomics focuses on openness, peering, sharing, and acting globally. An elemental part of that is the belief that all of us are collectively smarter than any one of us.

Tapscott was the keynote speaker at Federal Computer Week’s 22nd biannual CIO Summit, held earlier this year. At that event, he and others discussed those new ways of thinking and what it means for government, which piqued the attendees’ curiosity.

Clearly there was some kind of connection because Tapscott addressed the CIO Council’s annual off-site strategy meeting earlier this month.
So it probably didn’t come as a surprise when there was an announcement on the Federal Business Opportunities Web site last week titled, “Interagency management conference,” which will be awarded to Tapscott’s organization, New Paradigm. The research, to be titled, “Government 2.0: Wikinomics, Government and Democracy,” will look at how agencies can implement technologies that will help them get their jobs done and meet the needs of citizens.

“Unique opportunities exist to improve the effectiveness of the government,” the notice states. “With the ever-changing technology landscape, and the use of different technologies, it is vitally important for agencies to employ the current effective strategies and trends to implement technology to continue to meet the needs of agencies and, ultimately, the citizens.”

Exploring whether government is ready for the wiki world is a subject that will benefit from more research.

As FCW reporters sought to talk to those involved with the upcoming project, they kept hitting dead ends. It turns out that not everybody was ready to talk, so they deferred until they all could get on the same page.
It probably says that research into Government 2.0 is all the more necessary.

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