Saturday, April 25, 2009

Municipal Environments, Nonprofit Entrepreneurs, and the Development of Neighborhood Information Systems

That, my friends, is the title of my latest little publication. Want more? Here is the link to the E-Democracy issue of I/S: A Journal of Law and Policy for the Information Society in which the article appears. There is some nice stuff in there, by an assortment of members of the International Working Group on Online Consultation and Public Policy Making, all of it put together by Peter Shane of Ohio State University.

Still need more? Here is the abstract of the article..

In recent years, organizations in dozens of municipalities around the United States have implemented neighborhood information systems. Neighborhood information systems are technology innovations that bring together and disseminate, via the Internet, regularly updated statistics on births, crime, educational performance, and other vital community conditions. Drawing upon research on organizational innovation, this article examines the environmental characteristics and entrepreneurial activities that have been associated with the formation and diffusion of the National Neighborhood Indicators Partnership (NNIP), an association of some of the strongest and most visible neighborhood information systems. A series of statistical analyses demonstrate that NNIP projects are especially likely to be present in large, densely populated cities with sizeable minority populations. Interviews with individuals who have been leaders in the NNIP illustrate that a combination of local entrepreneurship and the sponsorship of national organizations has provided the resources necessary for the creation and maintenance of specific neighborhood information systems. These findings highlight the conditions, obstacles, and resources that nonprofit organizations encounter and draw upon when seeking to adopt technology innovations.




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