Methodical Snark critical reflections on how we measure and assess civic tech
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Weekly Research Roundup

Here’s a weekly summary, plus occasional commentary on research findings and conversations relevant to measurement issues in civic tech research.

Note that the general criteria is that I only post things that would be useful to know about when designing or implementing civic tech and accountability programs. That means I leave out a whole host of theoretical work and stuff on government innovation.

I’m always experimenting with finding the right level of detail and how to make this more accessible. Let me know how I’m doing or if there’s anything I’m missing.

Roundup: formal organizations campaign more online, instructive failure in scaling engagement, and weedsy methods for measureing #open

Civic tech research last week included deep dives into measuring and assessing open government in Mexico, insights on why governments choose collaboration, and field experiments that hint at the limits of scaled engagement strategies. Plus, funding, resources for mapping legal regimes, and smart thinking on how to think about civic tech impact.

Roundup: circumvention on the rise, costing closed contracting, better case selection, and a check list for digital methods

Last week saw new evidence on the costs of closed contracting, features for participatory engagement, and the positive outcomes of collaborative and adaptive development programming. Plus there's new resources for using Stata and guidance on digital and econometric methods. Plus, smart phones make us do silly things.

Roundup: participation is up in Latin America, nobody’s paying for the data revolution, and somebody finally asked the activists what research they actually want

Last week in civic tech saw a new index on civic engagement in Latin America, findings on government run crowdsourcing initiatives, lessons from m-health pilots, and some excellent summaries from the world of development research. Plus major geekdom on QCA methods, and for the first time I'm aware of, actual research on what kind of research activists want.

Roundup: evidence on the power of knowing who’s watching, nothing disruptive about open data research, and wet string.

Highlights from civic tech research last week included calls for intermediaries to build safe spaces for government data, an unsurprising stocktaking on open data research, and a productive research takedown by someone who's not me. Plus, there's piles of almost useful learnings, useful help for contribution analysis and data analysis with visualization, and tips for making research useful. Also...

Roundup: why people participate in politics and tweet storms, problems with generalizing research, throwing statistics out with the bathwater

Last week had interesting findings on political mobilization, now with brain scans. Lots of discussions about appropriate methods for measuring government performance, improving statistics and facilitating adaptive programming. Useful resources from the Engine Room and Beautiful Rising. Oh, and Disco!.

Roundup: strategies for institutionalization in govt, social media activism is stressful, and nobody reads research.

Findings Social media activism is stressful– At least in Pakistan, according to a recent survey (N=237, convenience sample) which found significant correlations between stress levels and political activism on social media. Users of Greece’s national transparency and anti-corruption website say they trust government more since the website was established (web survey n=130, availability...

Roundup: degrees of responsiveness, evidence on smart participation design, how digital mobilization works, civic engagement with the dead

Lots of findings in civic tech research last week. Evidence on how to build open procurement and citizen participation initiatives, field experiments on degrees of responsiveness and accountability workshops gone wrong. New resources on crowdsourced legislative processes and evaluating police accountability, plus insights on citizen policy preferences and lots of cases studies. All of this...

Roundup: Ugandan evidence on social context theory, all the Kenyan case studies, and dev economists heart India

Last week in civic tech reseach didn't have a lot of findings, but the evidence on social context theory from Ugandan villages is a doosey, with lot's of interesting implications for practice and study. Plus, @AllVoicesCount continued it's steady stream of case studies, there were several learning fora on tech in the health sector, and nerds can't stop thinking about D&D, even when innovating to...

Roundup: the impact of election-tech, 5 years of open data, and RCT threats to children

Findings: tech and elections Comparative research indicates that SMS is the most effective messaging platform for voter mobilization, while Brazilian  research shows a that e-voting has had dramatic effects on both mobilization and enfranchisement. Meanwhile, a US survey suggests that competent poll-workers boost voter confidence that votes would be counted.  Well, yeah. A global poll by the pew...

Methodical Snark critical reflections on how we measure and assess civic tech

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