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

Mechanism Mapping: a tool for determining when programs can be scaled or adapted

A recent Oxford white paper proposes mechanism modelling as a method to determine when results of policy evaluations should be scaled or adapted to other contexts. This is an compelling contribution to ongoing debates about external validity of RCTs, more importantly, it's a simple and useful tool for thinking about when and how civic tech programs work across different contexts.

Evidence on social accountability programs

…social accountability processes almost always lead to better services, with services becoming more accessible and staff attendance improving. They work best in contexts where the state-citizen relationship is strong, but they can also work in contexts where this is not the case. In the latter, we found that social accountability initiatives are most effective when citizens are supported to...

Designing useful civic tech research at scale: why methods matter

The Hewlett Foundation has asked for help in crowdsourcing research design for citizen reporting on public services. This is great; it’s a fantastic way to design useful research, and shows that Hewlett is maintaining the strong commitment to evidence and rigorous question asking that is so important to this field. The post has already generated some useful discussion, and I’m sure that they are...

research links w 4/17

Papers & Findings The world is ending. The 2016 Corruption Perceptions Index finds links between corruption and inequality, and notes falling scores for countries around the world. The Economist Intelligence Unit’s Democracy Index is titled Revenge of the “deplorables”, and notes a worsening of the worldwide “democratic recession” in 2016. Civic techs. What are...

Book Review: The Global Impact of Open Data

The Global Impact of Open Data: Key Findings from Detailed Case Studies Around the World By Stefaan Verhulst, Andrew Young Publisher: O’Reilly Released: September 2016         O’Reilly recently released a book documenting GovLab’s case studies on open data impact around the world. Some of the key findings were presented for feedback at the IODC last week, and were...

The Open Data Research Symposium 2016: summary and issues

Wednesday saw the second Open Data Research Symposium, convened on the sidelines of the International Open Data Conference (and this year’s IODC was a doosie, with side events and opre-events stretching across 5 days different parts of Madrid).  Here is a quick summary of the papers and working groups, followed by some hanging questions and challenges for next year’s Symposium.

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

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