Dissertation Proposal – Policy Analysis 2.0

Policy Tweets and Facebook.Gov: Assessing the Impact of Gov2.0 and Organizational Social Networks on Knowledge Sharing and Horizontal Collaboration in the Internal-to-Government Policy Formulation Process

Abstract: This research is aimed at describing the modern policy formulation environment and processes of knowledge sharing and collaboration amongst public sector policy workers, assessed in the context of several emerging factors: increasing adoption of Gov2.0 technology, evolving social network structures, evolving norms of practice amongst individual policy analysts and shifting organizational dynamics. Using mixed methods, the research will be undertaken across three perspectives: the individual policy analyst, the policy unit perspective and the horizontal, cross-governmental policy network perspective. The objective is the development of a theory of Gov2.0-supported policy formulation and a description of the “PolicyAnalyst2.0”.

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2011 Sylvia Ostry Prize in Public Policy

I learned yesterday that the following paper has been selected as the winning essay in the competition held annually in honour of Dr. Sylvia Ostry. Thanks to Dr. Rod Dobell, Jodie Walsh and Julie Longo for comments on an earlier draft, and thank you to the Public Policy and Governance Review at the University of Toronto School of Public Policy and Governance for this honour. This is the pre-publication version; the published version appeared in the Public Policy and Governance Review, Vol. 2, no. 2, p. 38 (May 2011).

#OpenData: Digital-Era Governance Thoroughbred or New Public Management Trojan Horse?


Governments collect, generate and compile vast amounts of digitized data continually – e.g., census and survey work by public statistics agencies (Dillon, 2010), or the monitoring of system conditions across a range of domains from the natural environment to public health (Hodge and Longo, 2002) – as a purposeful data-collection activity aimed at fuelling policy-oriented research. In addition, as governments do the things that governing entails – e.g., collecting vital statistics, administering the tax system, recording government operations activity, managing public infrastructure and natural resources, surveying and recording public and private lands, processing regulatory requirements or managing social service delivery – a wealth of digital data is amassed as a result (Cate, 2008).

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