Before the Open Government Partnership concluded its summit in London, incoming chairpersons Kuntoro Mangkusubroto and Rakesh Rajani divulged plans for a competition involving all of OGP’s 61 member countries. Tamsin Rutter of the Guardian reports: “Mangkusubroto announced the OGP competition for 2014, the theme of which will be citizen engagement. Rajani said the most important step OGP needed to take was ensuring the quality of engagement.” OGP hopes that this will inspire other governments worldwide to put more stock on transparency and accountability.
The specifics of the competition have not yet been revealed, but it is likely to be a massive endeavor considering the number of governments involved. This proves just how complicated most national and international competitions can get, especially if their stipulations involve judging such abstract things like citizen engagement. Keeping track of everything can be a logistical nightmare if OGP refrains from using reliable contest management software for business and government agencies, the likes of what a trusted contest platform expert like Skild has to offer.
The OGP competition is already a challenge in itself since it needs to come up with a mechanism that can quantify the “level of citizen engagement” among global contestants. As such, the competition may also need to distribute some sort of information kit that will explain the rules, scope, and limitations to all participants and get everyone on the same page. Likewise, the organizers should also remember to open communication lines with the contestants in case queries or complaints arise. These things can be best addressed by a custom contest app that allows organizers to keep tabs on all contestants’ entries, compliance to rules, and how well each entry meets contest standards.
These same considerations can be applied to local competitions, especially those run by state governments, while keeping certain legal requirements in mind. In California, for example, state contests need to completely disclose information about contest rules, the approximate value of prizes, tiebreaker mechanics, and other details. Contest management experts like Skild can help disseminate this information online as part of social media marketing campaigns as well as gauge how a particular contest fares based on the feedback it receives on networking sites.
The same approach may work for OGP’s competition in 2014, although it may be a little too early to say at this point.
(Article Excerpt and Image from Open Government Partnership summit concludes with competition, The Guardian, November 5, 2013)