John Tolva on social business in the public sector

I watched a really good interview earlier on youtube of  John Tolva, Chief Technology Officer (CTO) at City of Chicago – who speaks about technology, data and Social Business in the public sector – the video was taken at south by south west interactive 2012.

A few things stood out for me – not all new but good to hear it said:

  • The CTO has quite a broad remit which also includes economic advice around technology industries outside of the council. – Interesting to think about this in UK localgov and how this would shape up…I guess it depends on who is in the role?
  • Thinking about the system of city/community is a great way to start thinking about the socialisation of public sector organisations.
  • The community are excellent at providing warning signs within a local area, whether it be a fallen tree or blocked drains

A really useful video to help others

This is a really good video which uses a very creative way to illustrate how tools like twitter might offer value to people.

A really good point  – “It is people not technology that make the tool effective”

Collaborative Consumption and Public Services

Over lunch earlier today I starting watching some Ted Videos as I subscribe to their feed in my google reader and I enjoy getting inspired listening to the talks and they create little sparks of thought, most to be honest never make it to a blog post but some do.

The talk I watched featured Rachel Botsman, who is the co-author of the book What’s Mine Is Yours: The Rise of Collaborative Consumption.

Rachel States:

Collaborative Consumption describes the rapid explosion in swapping, sharing, bartering, trading and renting being reinvented through the latest technologies and peer-to-peer marketplaces in ways and on a scale never possible before. If you’ve used a car sharing service like Zipcar, experienced peer-to-peer travel on Airbnb, given away or found something on Freecycle or lent money through Zopa, you’re already part of the rise of Collaborative Consumption.

Collaborative Consumption is a game-changing opportunity for networked technologies to transform business, public services and the way we live.

I do very much like this concept and the movement that it promotes, however I started thinking that it does seem very similar to the concept of LETS:

A Local Exchange Trading System is a local, non-profit exchange network where all kinds of goods and services can be traded without the need for money, using an interest-free local currency so that direct bartering does not need to be done.

It offers many social as well as economic benefits, through regular core group meetings, trading days and social events. LETS is a truly international movement, although there is no global governing body. There are similar groups in places as diverse as France, Japan, the USA, and Hungary.
Via Exeter LETS Scheme

Considering the new focus on technology enabled collaborative consumption schemes and the existing LETS schemes – are these another key foundation and building block for Big Society and Public Service Delivery.

Then it struck me again that I’d already seen something which pretty much does this and is using technology as well as providing social care services –  Southwark Circle states on its website:

Southwark Circle members get together to enjoy a variety of interests and activities, and to learn new things through the Member Calendar. They can also buy tokens to get help from local, reliable Neighbourhood Helpers. Some members also help out fellow members and can earn tokens for doing so.

So I’d suggest that any public service people thinking about connecting with groups who can help get involved in providing services either formally or through connected networks or strong neighbourhood groups, then I would take a look your local LETS.

Social Media and the Workplace – Common Craft Video

For Local Government Colleagues who are keen to explain what social media in the workplace means but struggle to get their point across…

A colleague of mine @carefulkeith pointed me in the direction of  “Social Media and the Workplace Explained by Common Craft

It states:

This video takes a look at how social media sites like blogs, Twitter and Facebook are changing how companies think about external communication. It includes points on:

  • How social media sites are making organizations rethink external communication
  • How one company confronts a crisis – and learns how social media can help
  • The role of empowering employees to participate
  • The role of policies and guidelines in social media participation

Common craft videos are also available on you tube but this one isn’t available.