I would like to submit an application based on reader input to answer the question How might we improve the way citizens and governments interact? The contest is to fund a specific project.
The Knight Foundation (of the Knight-Ridder newspaper chain) are sponsoring the Knight News Challenge.
The idea of open government has had a rather winding journey—from the first datasets opened to the public, to apps for reporting potholes, to open systems that track the movement of disease across the world. Dedicated groups of talented people have attempted everything from opening IRS data locked in millions of PDFs to collectively writing legislation online. Some projects have succeeded; many more have failed. But collectively we have more information than ever before about what works, what does not, and what we should try in pursuit of more open and productive interactions between citizens and our governments.
This News Challenge is an opportunity to accelerate promising ideas and trends. Our definition of “open government” is broad, and ranges from small projects within existing structures to ambitious attempts to create entirely new ones. To use an architectural analogy, we’re interested in everything from putting a new coat of paint on the house to razing the house and replacing it with a geodesic dome.
Through this contest, we hope to help extend the spirit of open gov and to catalyze partnerships between hackers, civic innovators, governments, journalists and others. We also want to drive more open government wins in local communities, particularly beyond big cities. And we want to reinforce the idea that the promise of open government cuts across ideological, demographic and geographic lines.
Here’s the timeline for the Knight News Challenge on Open Gov.
Inspiration: (Feb. 12 - Feb. 19)
At the beginning of the challenge we invite everyone to post obstacles, solutions and existing projects. These ‘thought starters’ help us gain a better understanding of the problem area and potentially form the basis for the ideas that others propose. You can post an inspiration whether or not you have a project idea.
Submission: (Feb. 19 - Mar. 18)
This is where you submit your idea. The best entries are concise, clear and visual - you can easily upload images and videos. To maximize the benefit of feedback, apply early, as submissions can be edited at any point. (For more submission tips, read Kio Stark’s blog post from last year on how to make your News Challenge application stand out.
Feedback: (Mar. 18 - Mar. 29)
After submissions close, we’ll keep the conversation going by keeping the site open for comments. We invite everyone to ask questions and connect with the community.
Refinement: (Mar. 29 - Apr. 5)
The refinement phase allows semifinalists to utilize feedback, edit entries and clarify questions that may have come up in the comments.
Evaluation: (Apr. 5 - June 10)
During the closed evaluation we’ll seek advice from outside advisors, conduct due diligence, interview the finalists face-to-face and recommend to our trustees which projects to fund.
Winners: (June 24-25)
We’ll announce winners at the Civic Media Conference at MIT!