Initial challenge ideas
A number of early ideas have come out already as people have started to work on the hackathon. These are examples only, and participants shouldn’t constrain themselves to these in particular. Also, we expect that some ideas might challenge some people, and others might challenge different people. Challenging ideas is healthy (vs attacking personalities which isn't), and a healthy hackathon is a place where ideas can be tested. It's a sandpit of sorts, where ideas can take shape - but it's still a sandpit and there are long, involved processes before anything gets manifested in the real world. .


What do we mean by "engagement" in different circumstances? (is it the same as "Participation"?) What is the point of engagement in different circumstances? (and who's We anyway?)

Some possible situations:
  • neighbours (physical community) keen to build connections amongst the neighbourhood
  • council inviting input or submissions on a specific issue (consultation)
  • people concerned about a local example of a widespread issue (e.g. loss of a heritage building / harm to wildlife)
  • neighbours to a proposed engineering project keen to get their views heard
  • councillors inviting views and ideas (being good Councillors)
  • individual / group with a development idea keen to build local support for it
  • local institution (school, sports club etc) trying to grow more roots in the community
  • young people (<25yo) wanting to help shape their environment (but not keen to get involved in the traditional associations and groups)

What kinds of engagement are we wanting in these situations? Do we need to be invited by Council to "engage"?

How do we increase the volume of citizens engaging in Council consultations without overloading the Councillors and staff?

How do we enable smaller groups to draw on larger networks of people and interest groups to strengthen their voices?

How do we connect ourselves online, and physically, to share information about what is happening in our city?

How do we encourage young people, and people from marginalised groups (elderly, ethnic minorities, less-able people) to "engage"?

How do we support interest groups to connect to the rest of the community?

What do we expect of companies in our city in terms of engagement and community participation?

How do we help people who are timid to be heard?

What kinds of forums - not limited to Facebook or public meetings - would be best for achieving what people want from "engagement", in different circumstances?

How do we turn public meetings into places where we can discuss ideas and communicate rather than places that are dominated by strong speakers or opinions?

How could we map all of the conversations that are going on across the city on a Google Maps type of view?

How could we provide free wireless for communities to allow all residents to participate in any online discussions and views?

How do we make the process of engagement fully transparent?

What is the difference between consultation, collaboration, or even complete empowerment of the community?
Should decision making be about two sides arguing or working to find common ground?
For a great New Zealand grown collaborative decision-making platform, check out Loomio.

Who has the loudest voice? <- Loudest voice not the same as taking views of the majority!

How can we make community engagement less about the loudest voice, and more about what the majority of the community want/feel?

This workshop is timely. Currently being organized for June 2015 is a Food Hui around community engagement with the plethora of community food providers in the city in an effort to provide a better system of communications and network. This sector is fragmented with many players who are running small enterprises on the smell of an oily rag and lack the resources individually, to inform and engage residents with some interest in projects and activities in the city - Local Food Week in April is an example -low turnout because all voluntary and next to no marketing. I run a Wellington charity in a similar way and we are all looking for better ways to engage with residents. I am only available on Sunday 8 March as we are in a busy harvests season"

Ideas worth spreading - TED Talks & more

Tauranga's Digital Stategy - a prototype: http://app.collxtion.com/user/venturecentrecivictech/introduction

The idea that if you see a problem you work to fix it, not just complain about it. government should be built by the people, for the people.

Hacking is about more than mischief-making or political subversion. As Catherine Bracy describes in this spirited talk, it can be just as much a force for good as it is for evil. She spins through some inspiring civically-minded projects in Honolulu, Oakland and Mexico City — and makes a compelling case that we all have what it takes to get involved.

Civic developments and politics — schools, zoning, council elections, engineering projects — affect our world. So why don't more of us actually get involved? Is it apathy?

Too often, people feel checked out of civic development — even at the level of their own city. But urban activist Alessandra Orofino thinks that can change, using a mix of tech and old-fashioned human connection. Sharing examples from her hometown of Rio, she says: "It is up to us to decide whether we want schools or parking lots, recycling projects or construction sites, cars or buses, loneliness or solidarity."

Traditional democracy - vote once every few years, and take your chances in the meantime - is being changed quickly, and somewhat against its will, by the internet. NESTA (the UK-based innovation charity) has looked at the trends from 2014 and predicted that in 2015 democracy will really start making itself at home online. This is exciting, and a bit scary, but it's on its way whether we welcome it or not! NESTA

The Digital Agora - our cities should be a product of collaboration between the different groups that compose them; digital and human agoras are springing up all over the world and making their cities stronger, fairer, more prosperous, healthier, more fun to live in... (Meaning of agora)


The outcomes from the hackathon are generally aligned to solving the challenge and also providing an opportunity for the participants to take their own ideas further. We think the outcomes are: TO BE CONFIRMED

For those ideas, prototypes, and designs that we think have the most likelihood of succeeding (we’ll all vote as a group) running a “Dragon’s Den” type presentation approach with the Mayor and City Councillors, and other groups as well. E.g. Greater Wellington Regional Council and community organisations.

Document and refine the hackathon approach so that it can be applied to the entire city, other suburbs, with the same, or different, challenges. For example, another challenge may be: “How can businesses hack their local space?”

We want to start grouping together a bunch of people who can leverage open source data and form a community of creative thinkers that can set their minds to solving community problems like traffic, consultation, free access to the Internet, and whatever else we put our minds too.


We are proposing that all the ideas from the weekend will be “open sourced” to the wider community (via this wiki), so please only participate if you are comfortable with that. We have a strong bias towards community sourced ideas implemented on open source and open data platforms. We have an agenda and it is to show what is possible through the application of technology in an open and collaborative way. We are excited to have commercial supporters joining in as participants and sponsors but the focus will be on community driven, open collaboration.


page shorturl: http://goo.gl/8vDIfc