New media innovation exchange, anyone?

I've been looking through the nominations for the New Statesman New Media Awards**, and I'm blown away by the range of interesting online initiatives there, ranging from the governmental to the small group and individual.

The Open Innovation Exchange has been nominated, and of course we are all hopeful that we'll get recognition for the open process we used to bid for the Cabinet Office contract, even though we failed. (No official news of the winner, though I did hear unconfirmed rumblings that the lead within the third sector may be ACEVO rather than NCVO).

The aim of the awards is to "celebrate UK new media projects that benefit society, government or democracy," and this year the categories are Contribution to civic society; Modernising government; Elected representative; Education Information and openness; Advocacy; Young Innovator. You can see last year's winners here.

I know some of those nominated - but not about many others, even though I try and scan the field and write about it here. It strikes me that awards are great for flushing out interesting initiatives, and rewarding them after they have achieved something. However, awards aren't generally designed to encourage start-ups, or help them learn from more experienced initiatives. To do that we would need .... ummm ... an innovation exchange!  read more »

Open sourcing this process

As David W has indicated already, it would be good to document what we did here so that others could pick up the process, use it themselves and improve it. Open sourcing the process.  read more »

Thanks - but no thanks

The Office of the Third Sector (OTS) are still to announce their preferred partner for the delivery of the Innovation Exchange. But unfortunately it's not going to be us . .  read more »

OIE makes the Society Guardian

I'm slightly embarassed by the attributions here but we made it into last week's Society Guardian (sponsored by vodaphone).

Open collaborative innovation boosted by NESTA

First posted at Designing for Civil Society

UserinnovationNESTA provided a strong boost last week to the idea that innovation comes from open, collaborative approaches - rather than just research departments and manufacturers working behind closed doors protecting their secrets with the aid of intellectual property lawyers.

To underpin this, at the launch of their Connect programme last Thursday, the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts invited along Professor Eric Von Hippel, from the MIT Sloan School of Management.

In a short presentation, videocast here, he confirmed for me - and I should think everyone else there - that celebrating and encouraging bottom-up ways to improve products is one of the best hopes we have for the future. I found it enormously encouraging as we wait for tomorrow's decision on our proposals for an Open Innovation Exchange.  read more »

How our technology will be different

In the team interview after our session at the Cabinet Office, Ben Whitnall and the work of our technology partners Delib didn't get much of a mention.  Ben's not one of complain, but I do think their approach deserves celebrating. I suspect that our competitors are pitching in with plans for new systems that have every conceivable facility for getting and sharing information, communicating and collaborating.

In our proposal, Delib make clear that they can build content management systems with the best, and if needed we could have ....

  • Blogging, news
  • Calendaring and events
  • Expert answers
  • Contacts, friends, groups, networks
  • Pledges and critiques
  • Surveys, polls
  • Forums, bulletin boards

However, in our discussions it's been clear that Ben sees the wider Internet as the real platform. To tease this out, we exchanged a few emails.

My first question was, if others are probably proposing bit new systems, how is the Delib approach different? Ben replied:  read more »

After the interview was over

Click To Play

Formats available: Quicktime (.mov)

As Simon wrote earlier, Jane Berry, Ben Whitnall and I did our best at Cabinet Office yesterday in an interview for the Open Innovation Exchange proposal.

We came out feeling pretty buzzy, and since we were in Westminster, and my son Dan had his best video kit on hand, we thought we should do justice to the occasion with a proper interview. We took ourselves off to College Green, opposite the Houses of Parliament. It is more often used by national TV for interviews with Ministers, but hey, we are about leveling things out a bit.

As you'll see, we felt that we gave of our best, and on reflection wouldn't do anything differently in the bid or the interview.
My main feeling - and I think it was the same for others - was that this was a life-changing experience. Well, tender-writing, job-doing-change-experience anyway. Once you have the excitement of opening up, and getting ideas and commitment from others in return, the old ways don't seem too appealing.  read more »

Stories 1, 2 and 3

I've been asked put up all of the stories we used in the interview. They are already here but a bit hidden, so here are the links:

Story #1 - Innovation in Youth Services

Story #2 and #3 - Graft and Grow, Invest in Success



Just a quick note to say that we've been interviewed. A video chat done immediately afterwards should appear here shortly. What are my immediate feelings?  read more »

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