Center for Government Interoperability - Gov Ideas
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What is the single most needed new app to improve government?

Be it a mainframe system, smart phone app, or midsize computer program, what app would be the most effective one to improve government through any means such as business process improvement, interoperability, or data integration?

Ambiguity in this question is intentional so that a full spectrum list can be created and posted to our website. Suggest anything in any category including concepts not yet created, improvements to already existing applications, or broader implementation of little-known apps.

All suggestions and out-of-the-box ideas welcome. You can submit suggestions on the form here or send your suggestions to us via email.

Further discussions can be held at the Center's government site or at the specific discussion forums referred to within each suggestion.

Survey results for best business process improvement ideas are on this page.

Survey Results

Best New App Suggestion

App Information


Information Assurance Information Assurance (IA) is the single most needed new app to improve government security. An IdM app with adjustable command button(s) to increase or lower the level of authentication required to complete an event. Increasing an authentication level from 2FA to 4 or more increases the task a user is prepared to undergo, but simultaneously increases the integrity of the identity and level of information assurance. Group posted from: - Information Security Community - July 6, 2011 Security
Interactive Voter Choice System The greatest vision and concept I've seen in recent years is the Interactive Voter Choice System (IVCS) developed by political scientist Nancy Bordier. It is an initiative to empower the U.S. electorate to reform and restructure public sector electoral and legislative processes that obstruct voter choice. You can find more information here: What a groundbreaking shift this would be in the US and Europe. Group posted from: - Systems Thinking World - July 6, 2011 Political Reform
StratML The single most important "app" would help agencies improve their own performance. Rendering their performance data in machine-readable format, as required by section 10 of the GPRA Modernization Act, is a necessary step in support of such applications. The Strategy Markup Language (StratML) is an open, standard machine-readable format for strategic and performance plans and reports. Its purposes are outlined at The second most important set of applications will make it easier for citizens and taxpayers to engage not only government agencies but also nonprofit, public service organizations as well as each other directly in support of goals and objectives of importance to them. Widespread usage of the StratML standard will facilitate such applications. Group posted from: - Government 2.0 - July 7, 2011 Collaboration
Fiscal Management Comprehensive, flexible revenue management that handles localities' particulars through calculator routines.. Group posted from: - MuniGov 2.0 - July 7, 2011 Fiscal Management
Data Models Back to the Systems Development Life Cycle. Model the enterprise with Entity Relationship Diagrams. Then create a data model with Data Flow Diagrams and CRUD (create, use, destroy) charts mapping the data to entities. CASE tools are a must before looking at an application. Know thy data and its relationships. That is where it used to begin. Group posted from: - Better Government - July 7, 2011 Business Process Improvement
Smart Phone Web Payments For local government it would be a web payments solution for smart phones that integrates directly with the government's backend financial system(s). With a simple interface like Bank of America. Citizens would create one account that hooks up to their municipal utilities and anything else they need to pay the government. Those services are what most people stand in line for or pay via their computers. Needs to offer scheduled payments and options for paperless billing. Ideally it would be a regional partnership where residents could pay for services offered by both city and county via one app. This app should also connect to a web-based version in case citizens want to manage their account via traditional pc. Assumed result would be easier use by citizens, fewer service shut-offs, higher collection rate, fewer staff required to man counters and phones. Group posted from: - MuniGov 2.0 - July 7, 2011 Fiscal Management
Transparency Flood the decision making processes with light, insist the program has visibility for all. Poor goals and objectives can be queried, poor relationship decisions can be discussed and resolved, obstacles can be tackled by a much wider audience, big four consultancy fees can be discussed as to the value they bring, and the level of subservience to idiotic customer fixations. Put it all on a social media platform to allow "discussion", but limit those who can comment if contributions have the wrong focus, or are seen to add clutter, not bring simplicity and solution. Proper transparency and accountability, and the impetus to insist that all government staff have proper Project Management training and Mentoring. Much needed in the UK Defence sector it appears. Don't mind which physical platform, but we need to do this soonest to stop further taxation wastage. Group posted from: - Systems Thinking World - July 7, 2011 Transparency
Technician Optimization Application I’m about to test out a gem of an App. It is called the Technician Optimization Application (TOA) by SPARC LLC. They have developed an app that enables Technology Technicians that do desk-side support to monitor and analyze their own decision points and affects on employees. Where I work, employee productivity is largely dependent on out technology support services. We use many devices and systems to manage one of the largest agencies in the U.S. I think TOA is going to make a big difference. It is also a good example of the Primary Analytics Platforms I talk about in briefing the PASS discipline.. Group posted from: - Better Government - July 7, 2011 Business Process Improvement
Watson I’ve been associated with the Department of Defense and a follower of politics for over 30 years. I’ve been a worker and a senior leader. I’ve seen the introduction of several technologies (done well and done poorly) intended to make government work better. The results are mixed at best. They attempt to hide or transfer the fundamental information problem but many times just make the effects worse. The most damaging and pervasive information problem in government from the top down is the lack of human integrity in communications. It is so pervasive and ingrained in everything we do, that we don’t even think about it anymore. The movie, Liar Liar starring Jim Carey, illustrates this so well. I’m not talking about information mistakes, but the intentional misrepresentation of facts. That more than any other information problem contributes to inefficiencies, waste, failures, and the loss of life and property. There are IT apps that attempt to address aspects of the problem such as automated identification technologies and fraud detection. And of course there are lie detector devices as well as fact-check websites (which require labor intensive research to maintain); both are not without reliability and accuracy problems. We need an app that can reliably detect intentional and unintentional factual errors in all forms of official communications in near real time. Such an app would certainly be a game changer. Could apps like IBM’s Watson and Wolfram/Alpha be contributing technologies? Group posted from: - DAMA International - July 7, 2011 Political Reform
BPI I would focus on continued cost and performance efficiency improvements in the government (e.g., reduction of number of payroll systems) and the adoption of knowledge management systems (since there is going to be ongoing and significant turn over).Group posted from: - DAMA International - July 8, 2011 Business Process Improvement
XtDM An extensible xml schema that defines the relationships of data models and data. Such a schema would allow the translation of one data model to another and identify potential overlaps, conflicts, context sensitive keys, etc. Posted July 8, 2011 Business Process Improvement
Government Service Navigation Coming from a municipal government in Ontario, Canada - I think anything that helps navigate the nuances of services such as garbage collection. What can you put in what 'bin' (we have three streams, organics, recyclables and waste)? Based on where you live. What day? Service disruptions feed. Could be lots more that is a gap that I haven't seen anywhere. Transit is always good, but there are lots of those. I also agree with bill payments of a large scale. Imagine the ability to purchase an e-ticket for transit like you can for the movies on your smartphone. Group posted from: - MuniGov 2.0 - July 8, 2011 Data Integration
PremierOne CSR According to Motorola, Windsor is the first city in North America to adopt this application. Motorola’s next-generation public safety application aimed at transforming the way public safety agencies operate, collaborate and share information. It is a unified applications suite that offers a real-time view of the community for enhanced safety and resource allocation. Motorola’s PremierOne CSR (News - Alert) is designed to help agencies respond to citizens quickly and efficiently. According to the company, this application provides municipalities with a streamlined, cost-effective approach to managing government-wide operations including call centers and field crews that respond to requests for service. Group posted from: - 3Is-Ideas-Innovations-Inventions - July 11, 2011 Data Integration
Politician Voting Transparency I would like to see the voting records of all congressmen and senators tallyed and tweeted on an ongoing basis...another useful app would be line item budget spending with a national debt calculation continously updated. Perhaps a third would be an updated schedule of all pending bills and legislation before both federal houses. But if you want to be controversial..perhaps a wiki with all quotes on all issues from all representatives, senators and the the background of the other apps, with all contradictions highlighted. Group posted from: - Systems Thinking World - July 11, 2011 Transparency
Common Data Interchange A common data interchange - preferably based on XML - and greater availability to that interchange via web services. We still interface with the IRS using telnet for crying out loud. Group posted from: - CIO Forum - July 11, 2011 Data Integration
Public Decision Making The needed apps would improve mutual learning, help experts and stakeholders interact, and overcome the shortcomings of bureaucracies. See "Public Decision Making in California: the big challenges and how they can be met. Group posted from: - Systems Thinking World July 12, 2011 Open Government
Citizen Self Service It has been my experience that the government needs greater forms of self service. Too many systems and processes rely on government workers and legacy systems that have not yet been automated. This can create higher levels of bureaucracy and unnecessary use of value resources. Group posted from: - Business Process Re-engineering Practitioners July 12, 2011 Business Process Improvement
Data Conversion I am not a municipal government person. I am retired from the Ontario Provincial government. I believe we need an app that collects and converts data that will assist in keeping/ archiving digital files(Electronic records). Migration of data from one medium to another is almost impossible when we no longer have readers for older digital technology. Example 1970's Wang and or Micom word processor discs. Group posted from: - MuniGov 2.0 July 12, 2011 Business Process Improvement
Emergency Outage Notification An app for use by city and public utilities that would notify building owners/managers/operations of scheduled or emergency outages due to breaks or repairs or maintenance would be highly useful. If the app would allow those notified to respond with conflicts to critical operations, that would be even more useful. Lack of communications in this area can cause financial and physical harm to affected properties. Group posted from: - MuniGov 2.0 July 13, 2011 Business Process Improvement
Work Orders App How about an app that would allow me to send work orders to my utility and municipal employees in the field. Group posted from: - MuniGov 2.0 July 14, 2011 Business Process Improvement