E-Gov/Civic Engagement

9:00 am – 11:45 am EDT
Commission Meeting Room, 445 12th Street, S.W., Washington, D.C.

The goal of this workshop is to evaluate how broadband can improve the performance of government specifically in terms of transparency and citizen participation and more generally in terms of effectiveness and efficiency. The workshop will consider various ways all levels of government, as well as governments in other countries, have used broadband to improve its performance in these ways and how those lessons might apply for purposes of developing the national broadband plan. The workshop will also consider the potential benefits of universal broadband in enabling various government operations to move to a digital platform in terms of improved performance, cost savings, and strategic benefits to the communications infrastructure.


The following are some of the preliminary topics that will be covered at this workshop. If you would like to discuss any other topics, please send us your suggestions.
  • Key new technologies for government operations
  • How government operations could change if there were universal broadband
  • How can access to broadband amplify the goals of open and accessible government (increasing public awareness and participation in government)?
  • What are new uses of broadband that would further open government and civic participation?
  • How do new media, including social networking tools, advance civic participation, and are there limitations or concerns associated with such use?
  • How can broadband infrastructure and services improve citizen access to local and national news, information, dialogue with government and other citizens, transactional efficiency, and participation in governance?
  • Does access to broadband increase the ability of the average citizen to make her voice heard by the government and other citizens, and if so, how can this be advanced?
  • What are the benefits of video streaming or video conferencing of government meetings to enable participation by those who cannot attend a meeting in person (because of distance, cost, disability, illness, and the like)
  • Are there other applications of broadband technology that can improve civic participation and how can they be encouraged?


9:30 am Opening by FCC Chairman Genachowski
9:35 am Workshop Introduction, Eugene Huang, Moderator
9:40 am Panel 1: A View from Government (45 minutes: 10 minutes from each panelist followed by 15 minutes for questions from the FCC moderating panel)
  • Vivek Kundra, Federal Chief Information Officer
    Vivek Kundra will provide insight into how his IT Dashboard and Apps for Democracy increased civic participation and made the government more efficient. He will also discuss how government investments in cloud computing and telepresence might result in improved performance while accelerating American broadband leadership.
  • Graham Richard, Former Mayor of Fort Wayne, Indiana
    Graham Richard will share ideas about Fort Wayne Wired and Inspired to Gain and Retain Jobs. He will talk about local high speed broadband applications in public safety, healthcare, energy and education.
  • Beth Noveck, Federal Deputy Chief Technology Officer for Open Government
    Beth Noveck will discuss new opportunities for governments to engage citizens through broadband and emerging technologies, including through the use of collaboration platforms.
10:25 am Open Period (15 minutes)
10:40 am Break
10:45 am Panel 2: A View from the Non-Profit Sector (45 minutes: 5 minutes for each panelist followed by 20 minutes for questions from the FCC moderating panel)
  • Norm Ornstein, American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
    Norm Ornstein will present on civic engagement, the public square and campaign finance reform-- all in the context of the critical importance of universal access to broadband.
  • Andrew Rasiej, Personal Democracy Forum
    Andrew Rasiej will discuss innovative uses of broadband that enhance democracy.
  • Ellen Goodman, Rutgers School of Law
    Ellen Goodman will cover the role of public media in information creation, curation and connection, providing examples of current projects that engage and empower citizens and potential advances that could more powerfully connect people to information.
  • John Wonderlich, Sunlight Foundation
    John Wonderlich will present on technology’s potential to redefine how we interact, and government’s opportunity to help redefine citizenship – to live up to President Obama's vision for a technologically empowered society, by creating a more transparent, connected democracy.
  • Beth White, Chicago 2016
    Beth White will present on Chicago 2016’s efforts to communicate their objectives via their website and other new media, how they have reached out to the community on a variety of issues, and their plans for communication of jobs, policies, and other information going forward.
11:35 am Open Q&A Period (15 minutes)
11:50 am Closing Statements/Adjournment

Related Documents

  • Open Government
    Vivek Kundra, Federal Chief Information Officer
    Acrobat | PowerPoint
  • The Wired and Inspired 21st Century City
    Graham Richard, Former Mayor of Fort Wayne, Indiana
    Acrobat | PowerPoint
  • Open Government
    Beth Noveck, Federal Deputy Chief Technology Officer for Open Government
    Acrobat | PowerPoint
  • Public Media, Democratic Engagement and Broadband
    Ellen Goodman, Rutgers School of Law
    Acrobat | PowerPoint
  • Chicago 2016 FCC Review
    Beth White, Chicago 2016
    Acrobat | PowerPoint
  • Workshop Transcript
    Word | Acrobat