What’s Next? – Knight Foundation

Related Content: Tech for Engagement Manifesto” on Knight Blog

Emerging fields are by nature shaped by questions. What should people interested in Technology for Engagement put energy toward in the next few years?

A summit breakout session tackled the question, synthesizing the values heard over the 24 hours and creating a Technology for Engagement Manifesto.

At Knight, we’ve drawn from that document, and with an eye on the initiative’s focus areas, have zeroed in on some of the important questions from our perspective:

  • Amplifying impact: As the manifesto states, “our problem isn’t just about access, there’s a larger gap in skillful practice that we need to close.” How do we ensure that the technology is available and that people across ages and incomes have the skills to use it, so that the benefits are reaped by all members of our communities? A key question from Knight’s perspective: Once they do become involved, how do we move them up the proverbial engagement ladder? How do we deepen community relationships and effectively share insights?
  • Opening up government: How do we ensure that new tools emerge with the community at the core – with their input first on identifying the need, to design and ultimately use? Opening up data is another important facet, as the manifesto says, we need to increase our understanding, accessibility and standardization of it.
  • Measuring impact: Should we apply the same measures of success to both online and offline engagements? How do we measure change in physical and virtual communities that was spurred by online engagement?

Developing talent and building the network: Certainly gatherings like hackathons create connections and infuse a community with energy, but how do we translate that into building a larger field? And what kind of talent pool do we need to deliver on the promise for technology for engagement? How do we help develop it?

We hope you will explore these questions by contributing your own solutions that not only advance the field of technology for engagement, but show the world its true potential.