Defined by its creators as a platform for Web 2.0 elections, Liberopinion combines collaborative tools and social networks embedded applications enabling interaction between voters and candidates. Inspired by the American on-line campaign, and more particularly, the six million messages sent in advance of the Obama/McCain debate, the Portuguese site was tested during the general and municipal elections of 2009.
VoteWatch.eu is a NGO that aims to strengthen the transparency of European decisions by rendering accessible the debates and decisions of the European Parliament and the Council of the EU. For instance, the activity of each European MP is monitored session after session, offering thus a bigger visibility of parliamentary work. The website managers are convinced that facilitating the access to this kind of information will make European citizens become more interested in these institutions than they are today.
3. Rennes Metropolis
Rennes Metropolis and the city of Rennes make their public data available for anybody interested to putting them to good use. The idea is simple at a first glance, but very difficult to put in place, especially for a major city like Rennes. But their gamble has paid off and the website data.rennes.metropole.fr offers information related to all the aspects of the city life: transportation, public road network, equipments, green spaces, bicycle lanes, etc. A real asset for the inhabitants of Rennes and its suburbs.
“Using the virtual world to make a difference in the real world”. The motto of Public-i illustrates clearly its ambition to convince the citizens to reinvest the public place thanks to the Internet. For ten years now, Public-i has been trying to share and promote its conviction that the democratic gap can be overcome with a new approach. The latest asset of the British company: CitizenScape, a platform that integrates and explores how Web 2.0 social networking tools can help citizens get more involved with local decision making.
“A website to serve citizens”. This is the message of the new version of the Senate’s website. More playful and more participative than the previous one, this version offers a completely transparent image of the parliamentary work, allowing notably to consult the senators’ reports. Other new thing worth mentioning, the section “My Senate”, which offers a personalized space in which every citizen can enter his/her laws, senators, favorite committees, for a better followup. An original way to treat legislative work.
Member of the Australian Labour Party since 1996, Kate Lundy has become known in the technology community as a fierce advocate of Government 2.0 and e-Participation, including institutional reforms which will ensure openness and transparency of public decisions. Lundy has also made a name for herself as the only outspoken voice against the recently proposed mandatory internet filtering.
7. The Urban Concert Association
With partners such as the Paris Region and the City of Paris, the websites launched by the Association Urban Concert have gained a certain recognition…and it’s all for the better. Located in the 13th district of Paris, the association has launched two projects on the web that are worth seeing because of their recent development, which explains their presence in the list. The first project, dring13.org, invites inhabitants of Paris to become community reporters and debate on various subjects via SMS and MMS. The second one, tour-a-tour.org, has a double role: to invite the inhabitants to give their opinion on the everyday life of Olympiades district in Paris and to inform about the construction projects currently underway.
8. The Ombudsman of the Republic
The Ombudsman is a mediator between citizens and public authorities. Thanks to the website “Le Mediateur et vous” (You and the Mediator), but also to the uptake of social networks like Twitter (800 followers) and Facebook (3000 friends), the Ombudsman benefits today of all the right tools to successfully accomplish his mission. An Internet user can create there his/her own web page where he/she gets regular updates on his/her favorite topics. The Internet user has thus the possibility to propose, debate, or even talk directly with the French Ombudsman, Mr Jean-Paul Delevoye.
9. The Websters’ Dictionary
A writer, teacher at Washington D.C. and online activist, Ralph Benko is the author of “The Websters’ Dictionary”, a reference book in the world of online politics, explaining “how to use the web to transform the world”. The “Dictionary”, lauded by Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales and entrepreneur Steve Forbes, is the most recent handbook to provide readers with a primer on the political web. You can get a free and complete eBook version from http://thewebstersdictionary.com.
A long-time figure in Australia’s tech industry, Craig Thomler has spent recent years as an advocate for e-government in Australia. In addition to coordinating the online component of the Australian government’s health care reform efforts, YourHealth.gov.au, Thomler is also active in making submissions for the Federal government 2.0 Taskforce, an online hub for government agencies to consider issues related to e-government.
Colin Delany is the self-described “host” of epolitics.com, a website devoted to documenting best practices, tools, techniques, and learning experiences from his time working on the web since the mid-1990s. Delaney’s debrief on the Obama’s use of online organizing, “Learning from Obama” is a widely distributed account of the wildly successful strategy and methods used during Barack Obama’s 2008 bid for the presidency.