Sonal Shah has a thing (or five) to say to Jared Kushner

Women Rising Sonal Shah, the first head of the Obama administration’s Office of Social Innovation and Civic Participation, collected some lessons for her sort-of successor. President Trump’s advisor and son-in-law, Jared Kushner, has established the Office of American Innovation as a kind of White House think tank to modernize the federal bureaucracy. “We need to

Omidyar Network pledges $100 million to fix global trust deficit

Omidyar Network has pledged $100 million to fix the global trust deficit. “A lack of government responsiveness and a growing distrust in institutions, especially the media, are eroding trust,” said Matt Bannick, managing partner of the philanthropic investment firm of eBay co-founder Pierre Omidyar, and his wife, Pam. At the Skoll World Forum in Oxford, England, the

Fact-check tech is a thing, as startups tap the value of accurate information

From viral email and fake news to government propaganda, online media has a credibility problem. Which means fact-check tech is taking its place alongside civictech and govtech as an increasingly investable market. LazyTruth, for example, checks chain emails for inaccuracies. Founder Matt Stempeck, who is director of civic technology for Microsoft, says there are opportunities

Indian angel investors back Haqdarshak to match needs to government support

Indian angel investors have backed Haqdarshak to match needs to government support. Haqdarshak Empowerment Solutions has registered 1,500 government programs on its platform, such as a fund in Delhi that provides financial assistance for girls’ education. The Haqdarshack app walks candidates through a multilingual questionnaire, matches them to programs and then helps them apply, collecting

Civic tech goes local to boost community problem-solving

From new positions at City Hall (think: Chief Technology Officers) and public-service fellowships to innovation units in the Mayor’s office, civic engagement is getting a tech makeover. New experiments and old partners are coming together to reimagine civic engagement, and not only in a few star cities. In smaller cities and rural communities, public officials

Omidyar Network and Avina team up to boost civic tech in Latin America, again

The Latin American Alliance for Civic Technology (ALTEC) launched today with $3.5 million for projects using technology to fight corruption and improve public services. Omidyar Network and Fundación Avina and Avina Americas backed the fund to support nonprofits and for-profits using “civic tech” to promote civic engagement and government transparency. Combined with offline mobilization, civic

UK tax relief funds start to flow to social enterprises

Social Finance UK made its first investment from its Bright Futures Social Investment Tax Relief Fund, which has raised £1.5 million ($1.9 million) from 40 taxpayers since 2015. The £260,000 ($324,000) loan to Ability Tec, a manufacturing company, will help it train and hire disabled workers. People with disabilities are more than twice as likely to be