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Right2Water Citizens’ Initiative Gets Unsatisfactory Response: A Failure For Participation in the EU?

BY Antonella Napolitano | Wednesday, March 26 2014

The Right2Water campaigners [Flickr: gruenebayern (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)]

"Water and sanitation are a human right! Water is a public good, not a commodity!" This is not a sign that could be seen in a street protest, but the title of a petition that recently gathered 1.6 million online signatures among European citizens and was presented to the European Commission earlier this year. This was also the first official effort of the European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI), a petition instrument created by the EU in order to give citizens a way to push requests and issues that they care about to the attention of the EU institutions. But, as the European Commission issued an official response that proved non-committal and unsatisfactory to the committee, the issue also seem to now extend to the effectiveness of the ECI itself. Read More

WeGov

More Fodder For Social Media Activism Pessimists

BY Jessica McKenzie | Monday, March 10 2014

A recent study of the Save Darfur Facebook campaign found that the massive participation online gave the “illusion of activism rather than facilitating the real thing.” More evidence, if it was needed, that the “revolution will not be tweeted.”

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Edgeryders: how sharing and collaboration can build a vision for the European young generation

BY Antonella Napolitano | Tuesday, January 10 2012

Edgeryders, a project of the Council of Europe and the European Commission

In times of crisis the younger generation seems to be the one that is and will be most affected and without any clue on how to face unprecedented challenges. The Council of Europe and the European Commission are trying to help them by creating a think tank on youth’s transition to an independent active life. They’re doing in an unusual way, though, with a project where the transition experts are young people themselves. Read More

The World's Greatest YouTubing Body

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, April 25 2011

Think a contentious episode of Bloggingheads meets the United States Senate. National Journal's Dan Friedman reports: Congressional offices are working with YouTube on an unusual new initiative that may mark a new step ... Read More

What's a Smartphone City If You Don't Have a Smartphone?

BY Nancy Scola | Wednesday, April 20 2011

"The Future of Cities, Information, and Inclusion" map from the Institute for the Future. Technology Review's Erica Naone warns that if the future of urban life is data-driven digital one, there's a risk that ... Read More

Austan Goolsbee Reveals Advice America Gave

BY Nancy Scola | Thursday, February 24 2011

Last week, it was Austan Goolsbee's turn to take a spin at Advise the Advisor: Read More

WhiteHouseLeaks?

BY Nancy Scola | Wednesday, February 9 2011

Oversight's Issa Opens Online Cattle Call for Nettlesome Regs

BY Nancy Scola | Tuesday, January 25 2011

It's quite nearly a poetic setting. Chairman Darrell Issa stands amidst the wreckage of an Oversight and Government Reform committee hearing room under renovation to make a pitch for the House's chief watchdog body to ... Read More

Building a Public Policy Community of "Citizen Experts" Might Require Translation

BY Nancy Scola | Friday, December 10 2010

U.S. patent application no. 6,655,077 for, yes, a better mousetrap; via IPWatchdog. Read More

News Briefs

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Beyond @Congressedits, Capitol Hill Looks for Entry to Wikipedia

As he recently told techPresident, the creator of Congressedits did not aim to make Members of Congress look bad, but said he hoped that they would recognize the importance of Wikipedia as a public space and engage more with its community. "If staffers and politicians identified as Wikipedians, that would be super. You could imagine politicians' home pages with a list of their recent edits, that they would be proud of the things that they are doing." On Capitol Hill, there is in fact interest in making that vision a reality, starting off with an initial conversation that could create a framework for more Wikipedians in Congress. GO

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In the Philippines, Citizens Go Undercover With Bantay to Monitor Public Offices

The Philippines, a country of almost 100 million, is considered among the most corrupt country in Southeast Asia, despite a boost in Transparency International's Corruption Perception Index in the past few years (from 134th in 2010 to 94th in 2013 out of 175.) Corruption involves all levels of government, but benefits also from a mindset of tolerance, says Happy Feraren, the co-founder of Bantay.ph, an anti-corruption educational initiative that teaches citizens how to monitor the quality of government services, sometimes by going undercover. GO

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