Episode #6
Civil society initiatives using public data
Wikimania hackathon, 2014 by Alan Dawson
With the development of the internet and the dissemination of personal computers, many philosophers, sociologists, political scientists, and activists started to think of ways in which technology would promote more democracy. The internet ended time and space constraints for communication, web servers became an increasingly cheap way to store information and without the need of intermediaries, citizens could reach governments and finally tell what they want.
Well, almost 30 years after the beginning of this wave, a lot has been made but, on the other hand, there is still a lot to be done. As we talked about in previous episodes, technology is indeed a powerful tool that enables civil society to have access to their rights, as well as to monitor what governments are or are not doing. Besides, technology enables bottom-up initiatives, which might bring changes based on collective intelligence.
And how can we develop digital democracy initiatives that use public data and have an actual impact in communities, in people’s lives? How can citizen’s initiatives create a space where they promote change by confronting or working together with governments? Today, we have two special guests who will bring their experience and examples to learn with.

Guests
Prof. Dr. Gisele Craveiro
Full Professor at the Graduate Program of Social Change and Political Participation (EACH - USP)
Prof. Dr. Gisele Craveiro is full professor from the Graduate Program of Social Change and Political Participation of the Escola de Artes, Ciências e Humanidades from the University of São Paulo (USP) and coordinator of the Colaboratório de Desenvolvimento e Participação (Co:Lab) , a research center also based at USP that brings together government and citizens, enabling participation also through technological solutions.
She also participates in the Open Data Research Network and the Latin American Open Data Initiative, which investigate emerging impacts of open data. She coordinates solutions for online participation such as “Cuidando do meu bairro” and “Monitorando a cidade”, recognized worldwide, and analises and co-design transparency and open data policies.


Personal Website
Sonja Fischbauer

Community Strategy at Open Knowledge Foundation Deutschland

Sonja Fischbauer is a Community Strategist at the Open Knowledge Foundation Germany. She specializes in designing and managing community-driven processes and programs in the intersections of technology, politics, and society. She is the full-time point of contact for Code for Germany, a network of volunteer Civic Tech, Open Government, and Open Data experts. The network is comprised of a community of over 500 volunteers, who work on sustainable digital change in politics and administration. They meet online and in local groups, called OK-Labs, all over Germany.
Sonja previously worked for several other civic initiatives, including Wikimedia Germany and Wikimedia Austria. Other Open Data projects she’s led include Visual Analytics in Data-driven Journalism (VALiD), Gute Taten für gute Daten, and the Open Data Portal Austria.




Personal Website








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