Thinking aloud

Which “govtech” do you mean?

This is riffing on a Twitter thread I started the other day, and echoes comments I made while appearing before the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee, which is conducting an inquiry into digital government. When talking to friends from across Europe, I keep hearing them use the word “govtech”. It’s bothering me because they don’t all mean the same thing, all the time. I think that’s a problem. Most people seem to be using “govtech” to refer to the...
Thinking aloud

Internet-era ways of working

An earlier draft of this list, stuck to the PD office door Our definition of digital says: “Applying the culture, processes, business models & technologies of the internet-era to respond to people’s raised expectations.” Once they’ve heard that, the next thing people always ask us is: “OK. But how? How do I make that happen in my organisation?” Good question. We’ve spent a lot of time thinking about the answer to that. Between us, we’ve collectively made a lot of mistakes...
Essays

Making government as a platform real

A couple of weeks after leaving the UK Government Digital Service (GDS) back in October 2015, I attended the Code for America summit in California. I gave a talk about some work I'd led during my final months in government, work that explored what it would be like to live in a truly digital nation, with new digital institutions. What follows is the gist of what I said that day. I've updated it for clarity, and added some links that I...