Blogue de Lyne Robichaud

30 novembre 2011

ALL HANDS ON DECK! Call to action: Edgeryders

Do you know that on LinkedIn, some Francophones have a discussion about open government issues?

There is no shadow of an open government to the horizon, but these issues are floating around in people's minds, and are discussed here and there.

What can we do now?

Yesterday, Thanh Xuan T. wrote:
(translation) "How the French government, and even the European governments, operate prevents the application of open government, and also the fear of losing a little more power (both legislative and executive) and overall control over the people. Democracy often goes backwards, or serves some obscure purposes, only to result in more control and censorship "discreetly" practiced by the government. Regarding the question of political will: it is obvious that this type of "management" far exceeds the ability of our political leaders, who more consistently care about maintaining their elected mandate, than have a genuine interest in citizens and their nation. Therefore, open government becomes a paradox: a rather unpopular democratic method, not welcomed by officials, even in the land of liberty (especially by the current ruling party)." (Ref. Is France to soon have an open government policy?
Last week, at Edgeryders, it was discussed, with philosopher Michel Filippi, how to go about defining models of leadership and open government. I explained yesterday (see this post) that we covered risk aversion and locking processes.

Edgeryders is a bridge between government authorities and citizens: what a great opportunity to help them understand what are our concerns! Government officials are listening, via this platform. Let's speak up!

The time has come for citizens from European countries - and other nations - to mobilize in an unprecedented move. Students, open government apostles, culture hackers, worldview hitchhikers, open scholars, geeks, artists, scientists, philosophers, thought leaders, change agents, social alchemists, activists, advocates, communicators, lobbyists, writers, thinkers, visionaries, etc., people from all spheres of society, ALL HANDS ON DECK! Let's gather at Edgeryders!

1) Sign up on the platform

2) Upload your (real) pic

3) Complete your profile

4) Do the 'Share your ryde' mission (TELL YOUR STORY. What matters to you? Do you care about open government? Why?)
Here are examples of cool stories: do you know the Kyopol system? (mission by pedro.prieto-martin); Michel Filippi's mission; Neal Gorenflo's mission; Lyne Robichaud's mission, including discussions with philosopher Michel Filippi.
And soon, we'll start doing small packets of research together, we'll play Edgeryders missions and campaigns. Stay tuned.

29 novembre 2011

Risk aversion, locking processes, and leadership models

This year, in spite of myself, I became familiar with the "risk aversion" concept. I found out, the tough way, that government officials and managers deploy torrents of creativity to say NO.

According to Kieran Harrop, Director, Business Engagement, Strategic Initiatives, Government of British Colombia (a Canadian province), "open government risk aversion is one of government's greatest risks".

A quick environmental scan reveals that the majority of governments in Canada (federal, provincial, territorial and municipal), and indeed the world, are resisting the movement to open government, wrote Kieran Harrop at Government in the Lab.

Last week, at Edgeryders, a discussion about open government models with experimental philosopher Michel Filippi opened the door to explore behaviors and factors that lead individuals (such as government officials and managers) in a locking process. In French, Michel Filippi calls it «verrouillage».
"Someone who does not change its mode of action should first be referred by a model. Here, for example, one could refer to the "cognitive locking process". Cognitive scientists have shown that when a player is locked into a spot, nothing external to the situation can enter its cognitive system. Therefore, a government officer that does not change his leadership style could be locked onto a task. Now, if we agree, this model has taught us something more about the situation described, than what was known previously. This is an example of beginning of exploration that could be undertaken (at Edgeryders).

By starting to collect information on what is "irritating", we draw the first step of a design process. We can ask ourselves: What do I know about this particular object that I have designated as "irritating"? Then, we can go one step further by asking what knowledge irritants have, what they are, how are they used, on which "objects", etc. When we increase the creation of knowledge, we have an early model", explained Michel Filippi.
We hear more and more, that government institution have become largely irrelevant and increasingly impotent. I came to think that it is not sufficient for government officials and managers to understand the benefits of open government. They must also change their leadership model. How can there be transparency if corruption is slyly deeply infiltrated in a government, or if a culture of silence weighs on all shoulders? How can we claim to participation, if the government people are not listening, are disconnected from themselves and from citizens? How can we hope to cooperate when some officials are so arrogant and condescending, have the angry switch permanently on, that they make us want to escape by running in the opposite direction? It's hard to get away from a certain rage-against-the-darkness feeling. Government institutions are caught in a spiral, the more degraded they becomes, the harder it is to rally people to its defence.

Another problem is that MPs often end up with a job with no meaningful responsibilities. If there can be a way to treat MPs as somebodies, they will no longer be content to be nobodies. And they might in turn treat citizens as somebodies. If citizens are appreciated and respected, it could lead to a constructive climate of collaboration, in an open government model.

There are brave attempts to reverse these dynamics, but it is not enough. I am afraid it will take much more than that. Various reforms depend on people in the higher spheres being willing to buck the status quo. Can we come across the sort of officials likely to rock the boat, challenge "locking processes", and propose new leadership models?

Can Edgeryders participants explore together, and gather information about risk aversion and locking processes? I believe they can!

Opengov dreams that do not die out (Edgeryders)

Two weeks ago, I traveled to Strasbourg, France, to meet the Edgeryders team, a new project run by the Social Cohesion Research and Development Division of the Council of Europe, with financial support from the European Commission. I am very pleased and honored to be part of this team.

I'm not a European, but my vision extends to Francophonie, and beyond.

I 'shared my ryde' (I told my personal and professional story) at Edgeryders, since it is through the eyes of citizens that these government agencies wish to understand what is important to European youth (and not so young people as well). From this information, the Council of Europe will seek solutions to help youth overcome adversity (particularly with regard to unemployment). Thus, this is how should be an open government: listen, show a genuine interest in what is proposed by the citizens, and use this information (the creation of knowledge) to improve public policy.

At Edgeryders, I talked about my open government dream, because this is what has concerned me for several years, enough to have spent much of my time and my energy to try to achieve this ideal. To date, no Francophone country in the world truly adopted an open government policy. None have succeeded in applying the fundamentals of this philosophy (transparency, participation and collaboration).

My opengov dreams are still alive, although what I proposed, the Open Government and Francophonie project, has not come to life yet. When something inside drives you with such intensity, nothing and no one, can destroy it. While government authorities have rejected the ideas I proposed, these ideas were not destroyed. They continue to exist somewhere in me, and in other people as well.

At Edgeryders, I shared the details of a project that does not exist yet. Maybe it will never exist at one point. It is not real for now, but it has gravitated inside me, and in other people, for more than a year.

These ideas are not just mine, they belong to the community.

By sharing my story at Edgeryders, I met on my way a philosopher. A special type of philosopher: an experimental philosopher. Last week, with Michel Filippi, a discussion took shape, about leadership and open government models. This kind of discussion has never taken place yet in the Francophone world (and probably beyond): I was happy to see it take shape in a place like Edgeryders.

Michel Filippi also shared his story at Edgeryders. Thus, I learned that he is good at creating relationships between things and people, he excels at making models. He pointed to an article by Karl Dubost, dating from 1999, entitled "Semantic proximitiy":
"Let the form of action emerge, rather than model the action of the form."
This sentence has been floating in my mind for several days. I was wondering how I would shape a collective Edgeryders mission in connection with open government issues. This sentence comes to me at the perfect timing, as a gift. Thanks Michel Filippi!

I invite those who have open government dreams, like me, and also those who are concerned about the future of our society, to share their story at Edgeryders, and join in discussions, missions, and campaigns, as we weave together valuable information knowledge over the upcoming months.

Des rêves de gouvernement ouvert qui ne s’éteignent pas (Edgeryders)

Il y a deux semaines, je me suis rendue à Strasbourg, en France, pour rencontrer les membres de l’équipe du nouveau projet Edgeryders, piloté par le Conseil de l’Europe, et financé conjointement par la Commission européenne. Je suis très heureuse et honorée de faire partie de cette équipe.

Je ne suis pas Européenne, mais ma vision s'étend à toute la Francophonie, et au-delà.

J'ai raconté mon histoire chez Edgeryders, puisque c’est à travers les yeux des citoyens que les instances gouvernementales européennes souhaitent découvrir ce qui tient à cœur aux jeunes (et les moins jeunes également), et à partir de ces informations, rechercher des solutions pour les aider à surmonter les difficultés (notamment en ce qui concerne l’emploi). C’est ainsi que devrait être un gouvernement ouvert: à l’écoute, démontrer un réel intérêt pour ce qui est proposé par les citoyens, et utiliser ces informations (cette création de connaissances) pour améliorer les politiques publiques.

Chez Edgeryders, j’ai parlé de mes rêves de gouvernement ouvert dans l’espace francophone, parce que c’est ce qui me préoccupe depuis plusieurs années, suffisamment pour avoir consacré beaucoup de mon temps et de mes énergies à tenter d’atteindre cet idéal. À ce jour, il n’existe pas encore de pays francophone à travers le monde, qui se soit véritablement doté d’une politique de gouvernement ouvert, et soit arrivé à appliquer les fondements de cette philosophie.

Ces rêves sont toujours vivants, bien que le projet Gouvernement ouvert et Francophonie que j’ai proposé, n’ait pas encore abouti. Lorsque quelque chose à l’intérieur nous anime avec autant d’intensité, rien, ni personne, ne peut l’anéantir. Même si des instances gouvernementales ont rejeté les idées que j’ai proposées, ces idées n’ont pas été détruites. Elles continuent d’exister, quelque part, en moi, et chez d’autres gens également.

J’ai partagé les détails d’un projet qui n’existe pas encore. Peut-être qu’il n’existera jamais. Il n’est pas encore de ce monde, mais il a gravité à l'intérieur de moi, et chez d’autres personnes, pendant toute une année.

Ces idées ne m’appartiennent pas, elles appartiennent à la communauté.

En partageant mon histoire chez Edgeryders, j’ai rencontré sur ma route un philosophe. Pas n’importe quel type: un philosophe expérimental. La semaine dernière, avec Michel Filippi, a pris forme une discussion à propos de modèles de leadership et de gouvernement ouvert. Ce genre de discussion n'a encore jamais eu lieu, et j'étais contente qu'elle prenne forme dans un endroit tel que Edgeryders.

Michel Filippi a lui aussi raconté son histoire. C’est ainsi que j’ai appris qu’il est doué pour créer des relations entre les choses et les personnes, pour «modéliser». Il m’a pointé un article de Karl Dubost, datant de 1999, intitulé «Proximité sémantique».
«Laisser émerger la forme de l'action, plutôt que de modéliser l'action sur la forme
Cette phrase flotte dans mon esprit depuis quelques jours. Je me demandais comment j’allais orienter une mission collective sur Edgeryders, en lien avec les questions de gouvernement ouvert. Cette phrase arrive au bon moment, comme un cadeau. Merci beaucoup Michel Filippi.

J’invite celles et ceux qui ont des rêves de gouvernement ouvert, tout comme moi, et aussi celles et ceux qui sont préoccupés par l’avenir de notre société, à partager votre histoire, et à vous joindre aux discussions et missions collectives, que nous tisserons ensemble au cours des prochains mois sur Edgeryders.
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