Steven Clift’s articles, presentations, and speeches from 1993 through today

I’ve decided to upgrade my collection of articles, presentations, and speech from 1993 up through today. In 2009 the interest in the use of the Internet in governance and citizen engagement looks to be rising to an all time high. It is about time. Hundreds of people new to the field in the right place and right time (like those in the new Obama Administration) will have an opportunity to change the way democracy is done. You have an opportunity to open up our political process and engage the public is ways never imaginable. On the flip side, if you try something in government or any larger organization for that matter and it goes wrong, we won’t have another chance in twenty years until the scars of a failed e-democracy project finally leave the collective memory of a bureaucracy.

Over the years, from the age 24 to now almost 40 I’ve been gathering and synthesising ideas and trends related to “e-democracy” in an open source sort of way. I’ve been honored to speak in almost 30 countries and as you read might writings you’ll see the collection of international best practices emerge. While many come before me in the intersection of politics and technology/the Internet … I coined the shorten term “e-democracy.” I did this in 1994 with Minnesota E-Democracy before e-commerce, before e-government, before most “e” things except e-mail. While a number of my articles might seem dated, the field of democracy online – in governance and citizen engagement – has barely moved compared to online campaigning and advocacy. The later two areas have the engine of political competition for power and survival. The space I care about, requires democratic intent and both people and organizations who act in their enlightened self-interest. A few might make a buck or two and clearly the media – mass and citizen media – will play a larger role that I and many not coming at this from a journalism background expected.

Anyway, I’ll be adding my articles into WordPress starting with my oldest material and come forward as time allows. I look forward to your comments and questions.

Steven Clift

P.S. I will likely be retiring my Publicus.Net domain from active updates. After using a mispelled or at least a spelling variation of publius that no one is familiar with, it is time to move on.