“Civic innovation” aims to transform our nation’s cities by strengthening the relationship between citizens and their local governments in order to improve lives. But there is little common understanding of this field or its potential.
Based on nearly twenty interviews with government leaders, researchers, technologists, community organizers, foundation professionals and others, this white paper explores the current landscape and future potential of the civic innovation field as a first step toward bringing together disparate communities to identify needs, develop solutions and deepen democracy. It finds that while technology can empower civic innovation, technology does not drive it. Furthermore, concentrating on technology can alienate many in the civic innovation ecosystem. This ecosystem consists of diverse actors, each of which may assume centrality for different projects or processes, according to the skills and strengths of each. But civic innovation is far more than a compilation of projects; it can be a process that inspires institutional change, and it requires a culture shift that reframes current processes and results in meaningful structural change. Download a copy of the The 2050 City: What Civic Innovation Looks Like Today — and Tomorrow here or view below. http://ccip.newamerica.net/sites/newamerica.net/files/policydocs/The%202050%20City%20-%20What%20Civic%20Innovation%20Looks%20Like%20Today%20and%20Tomorrow.pdf