Civic engagement is all the rage. I addressed three different state-wide gatherings about the topic in the past week alone! Front Porch Forum is a long-term civic engagement catalyst and accelerator.
The concept goes by many names (see “public engagement” below), but mark my words, this will be THE NEXT BIG THING for nonprofits, academics, government agencies, etc… even pushing into the private sector.
The spark that started this wildfire came from President Obama’s campaign and his ongoing call to public service. Here’s a posting from Pete Peterson today…
The old White House Office of Public Liaison (OPL) has been renamed the Office of Public Engagement (OPE) with some new responsibilities. Calling itself the “front door of the White House”, the official press release noted that the “OPE will help build relationships with Americans by increasing their meaningful engagement with the federal government.”
Most all of the OPL staff will remain in place for the new OPE, including its director, long-time Obama friend, Valerie Jarrett. The White House will be using both online and “offline” – face-to-face – fora to both gain input from Americans and communicate Administration policies.