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Government Technology (GovTech)

Theo Douglas

1 July 2018

Iowa, United States

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Iowans will soon store their drivers’ licenses on their smartphones rather than in their wallets. The state is moving forward after a pilot project demonstrated the promise of going digital. Several more states are co...

Yale Environment 360

Maria Gallucci

28 June 2018

Houston, Texas, United States

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A lack of sulfur caps has lead to negative health impacts for those living along ship channels. After Emissions Control Areas proved successful internationally, however, this protocol is now being expanded to impact m...

Slate

Sara Hudson

26 June 2018

New Orleans, Louisiana, United States

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To resolve road construction communications with frustrated drivers, the New Orleans government developed RoadWork NOLA - an app that showed planned road construction. Unfortunately, no one was using it. Instead of gi...

ProPublica

Tik Root

18 June 2018

United States

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Thanks to an agreement between the U.S. government and a consortium of companies including Intuit and H&R Block, 70 percent of taxpayers are supposed to have access to free online tax preparation services. But Free Fi...

Next City

Emily Nonko

18 June 2018

Mobile, Alabama, United States

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After witnessing the devastating impact of Hurricane Katrina, changemakers in Alabama took control of creating a more accountable insurance system that valued weather-resilient home construction.

The Guardian

Mireille Silcoff

15 June 2018

Quebec, Canada

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Influenced by Scandavian countries, the province of Quebec created its own paid paternity leave program, which offers 70-75% paid leave. The program is aimed at dad’s, who have traditionally faced stigma and judgement...

Detroit Free Press

Katrease Stafford

15 June 2018

Detroit, Michigan, United States

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Detroit had an opportunity to use its huge budget for demolitions to help minority-owned and Detroit-owned businesses, specifically by using Hardest Hit Fund federal dollars. However, the winning contractors largely w...

The Philadelphia Citizen

Roxanne Patel Shepelavy

11 June 2018

Paris, France

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Paris has become a leader in reducing food waste by passing legislation that requires large grocery stores to donate leftover food or compost it. Since 2016, this measure has saved over 10 million meals a year. In Phi...

The Guardian

Aditya Chakrabortty

6 June 2018

Oxfordshire, United Kingdom

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When subsidies for local buses were cut, bus services stopped in West Oxfordshire. Rather than give in and allow retirees and children to be stuck in their homes, forward-thinking citizens stepped up and created a co-...

Apolitical

Jennifer Guay

5 June 2018

Denmark

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Denmark’s MindLab pushed experimentation and innovation in government for more than 16 years, inspiring imitators around the world. Now shut down, the innovation lab fell victim to a swift shift in political prioritie...

Earth Island

Samantha Harvey

1 June 2018

Jackson, Mississippi, United States

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A decades-old principle called “just transition” has made international headway in the fight against climate change and toward equity and sustainability. Fundamental to the principle is transitioning from a capitalist...

Vox

Zack Beauchamp

18 May 2018

Australia

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After passing the National Firearms Agreement in 1996, Australia saw a striking decline in suicide and homicide raters. The agreement – a result of a mass shooting – included a ban on certain kinds of guns, a mandator...

Scalawag

Gabrielle Hernandez

17 May 2018

Atlanta, Georgia, United States

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1500-3000 Words

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The organization Southerners on New Ground is helping reform the criminal justice system in the south. Activists won a small victory in Atlanta, where the mayor and city council approved a resolution that replaced cas...

Apolitical

Anoush Darabi

11 May 2018

Wellington, New Zealand

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Legislation is currently written in such a way that it often takes a lawyer to interpret how policies are supposed to work. What if laws were written to be machine-readable instead? A team in New Zealand rewrote two l...

Bloomberg CityLab

Anthony Flint

11 May 2018

Boston, Massachusetts, United States

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In Boston, one solution to homelessness could be as simple as the new Plugin House, a prototype of a tiny house that is affordable and easy to assemble. As cities across the country struggle to provide enough affordab...

Next City

Emily Nonko

9 May 2018

New York, New York, United States

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Changes in zoning laws as well as the promotion of guiding principles and successful case studies has led to well designed, environmentally efficient, and beautiful supportive housing. Well-designed housing has lessen...

Apolitical

Anoush Darabi

8 May 2018

Brighton and Hove, United Kingdom

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Governments in the United Kingdom, the United States, and elsewhere use crowdfunded donations to restore historic areas and fund new developments. The approach can build democratic participation and community cohesion...

The Guardian

Krista Mahr

4 May 2018

Cape Town, South Africa

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In late 2017, Cape Town announced “day zero,” the projected date when water supplies would be so low that the city would turn off the taps. It was a bold move and people listened. Water use fell.

The Guardian

Jonathan Watts

25 April 2018

Nairobi, Kenya

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Curbing society's reliance on plastic has become a top priority on international levels. In light of this, Kenya took the most drastic approach and implemented a ban on all plastic bags enforced with consequence of ja...

Apolitical

Odette Chalaby

17 April 2018

San Francisco, California, United States

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San Francisco’s Department on the Status of Women has pushed gender sensitivity in policymaking since 1975. As a result, the city leads the nation in paid parental leave, lactation support, and rights to flexible work...

BBC

William Kremer

Harriet Noble

16 April 2018

United Kingdom

Radio

Over 15 Minutes

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Cash prizes push people to solve all sorts of problems. Advancements in aircraft and spacecraft in particular have came out of public innovation challenges.

The Independent

Josh Gabbatiss

16 April 2018

Japan

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Plastic is a leading cause of much of the world's pollution problem. But thanks to a discovery in a Japanese recycling center, scientists believe they may have identified a substance that can drastically reduce the am...

Equal Times

Nithin Coca

10 April 2018

Taiwan

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In Taiwan, more than 4,500 citizens helped design regulations on ride-hailing and taxi companies by sharing feedback on digital platforms. The online tools can support democratic policymaking but face some accessibili...

Durango Herald

Jonathan Romeo

7 April 2018

Pueblo, Colorado, United States

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When lead and arsenic levels threatened the communities in Southeastern Colorado, the Environmental Protection Agency was asked to step in. In order to have a seat at the table when decisions were being made, communit...

The New York Times

Patricia Leigh Brown

27 March 2018

Orange Grove, California, United States

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Joint use policies turn communal spaces—such as schools and churches—during off-hours into a place for public health programs. This can be especially impactful in communities were the ability to exercise outside can b...

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