Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Class 10:, Ben Berkowitz

On Monday, March 26,  Ben Berkowitz, CEO and co-founder of will join us to talk about issue reporting, Open 311, and distributed democracy. 

To learn more about Ben and is company take a look at these articles in Inc., GovFresh, and FastCompany

Start to follow Ben on Twitter and leave your questions for him here in the comments.


  1. I signed up for SeeClickFix on Tuesday (installed the mobile app)and reported an issue (attached a photo) in my neighborhood. I received confirmation of my reporting.I reviewed the functionality - ability to see other issues reported near me, follow an issue, vote to fix someone else's issue and close one and see the status of the issue. I can attach a photo and share the issue on Facebook, Twitter, email etc. Other than the initial acknowledgement of my issue, have not received any other info and the issue has not been fixed. So definite positives are that the problem reports are visible to all and its ease of use, but there some questions I have about its functionality. My questions are related to the issues raised in the article I read on the FixMyStreet app in the UK and how your app handles them. Does SCF allow the agency responsible for fixing to update the issue or its closure? I think this is a somewhat negative aspect because it causes a disconnect between the agency and the issue reporter. Local agencies in the UK complain that the app duplicates their own systems for reporting issues and causes more problems integrating service. They say there is no accountability for the person reporting and can result in bogus issues. 2 more - how do you manage expectations about the length of time it takes to fix an issue? My most important question is how do you encourage people to use it? I had never heard of it until I did this for the class and I didn't see very many people from my area on there using it? Where is it working especially well and what are the factors that influenced this success?

  2. Given that there exist several ways of receiving issue reports from citizens, what factors made the government consider SeeClickFix seriously and attracted active involvement including quick response to issues?
    The idea of developing new tools usually comes from developer's personal experiences, like the issue of graffiti in your neighborhood when you got an idea for SeeClickFix. To what extent would you like to expand your interest to design different platforms and how could you do that?

  3. The is helpful to improve the life quality of the community. I am interested in this website,especially the application of social media in the community co-production.I have two questions.First,is the SeeClickFix company a private corporation?Every private corporation pursuit the profit.This company will spend much money on the website, the staff, and so on.I wonder what’s the benefit?My second question is as the community co-production, how to avoid or reduce the free-rider?Thank you.