Friday, November 07, 2008

Federal government to trial public consultation via Web 2.0 in 2009

Following up from AGIMO's 'consultation blog consultation', The Australia has reported that the Finance Minister has indicated that the Federal government will be trialling public consultation via Web 2.0 tools in 2009.

The article, Tanner eyes web 2.0 tools, begins the process of setting a direction for the Federal government, with Minister Tanner stating,
"The rise of internet-enabled peer production as a social force necessitates a rethink about how policy and politics is done in Australia," he said.

"In the longer term, governments will have to adapt to information's new online centre of gravity.

"This is not an undesirable thing; there are significant opportunities for government to use peer production to consult, develop policy and make closer connections with the citizens it serves."

I agree that it is not undesirable - in fact in my humble opinion it's a highly desirable approach, allowing more people to get involved with the decisions that affect their lives and helping educate people to the machinery of government.

Done well it may even help offset the people crisis the public service is facing, by encouraging people into the public sector.

I also believe that the government will be best served by drawing on the expertise of Australia's social media experts to achieve fast success.

Relying on traditional government communications and IT teams presents, in my view, a greater risk as they may not have all the relevant and necessary experience to effectively use social networking approaches in the online channel.

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