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

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.

research links w 12- 17

Findings Politically marginalized groups have less access to the internet, worldwide. This shocker based on network measurements over 8 years and identification of politically relevant groups as defined by the Ethnic Power Relations (EPR). The relationship between online and offline activism is messy, according to a survey of 1023 adolescents from five Balkan countries, while a year-long study in...

Why do governments do civic tech and open government? (a mini lit review)

The civic tech and open government community spends a fair amount of energy persuading government counterparts to get in the game, measuring how well they do, and encouraging them to do more and better. There seems to be based on a general assumption that doing so works best when appealing to government incentives, either to make their work easier, to increase their legitimacy or to get on the...

research links w40

Papers / Findings Squeaky wheels get the grease.  Analysis of policy crowdsourcing for urban planning in California uses natural language processing to show that (1) whether or not citizen contributions are included in policy depended on their “volume and tone,” (2) that the contributing crowd was more representative of the community than elected representatives contributions, and (3)...

Research Links w 39

Papers and Findings Nordic Open Access to Research Data. A new research paper reiterates important conditions for effective open access, and offers 3 recommendations for Nordic research communities that take advantage of their countries’ size and position. A psychology study in Zimbabwe suggests that for political activism in repressive political contexts, psychological resilience in the...

Research Links (w25-28/16)

4 weeks’ worth, yikes. #summer Papers/Findings Citizen Engagement FTW! The Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory just released a “virtual issue” on citizen engagement, collecting the most important articles with that focus in that journal since 1995, to make some sense of how citizens actually engage with governance across the policy cycle. The editors’ take...

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

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