Monday, 14 June 2010

The Second ScotGovCamp Blog Post

David beat me to it on the ScotGovCamp blogging front, but I hope there will be lots of ScotGovCamp blog posts in the coming months...

What's a GovCamp then?
GovCamps are self organised unconferences for people that work in and around government. The GovCamp movement was started by Jeremy Gould in January 2008 and there have been a number of central and local government focused events in England. 

  • are free
  • have no set, pre-defined agenda
  • focus on attendee participation
  • integrate with online stuff
  • are relentlessly positive, constructive and creative 
Generally, the GovCamp movement enables those who are interested in developing innovation and technology in government to come together in an informal setting to share their ideas. 

If you're still not sure, check these out: 
But why a ScotGovCamp?

ScotGovCamp is partly about me :-)  I've blogged before about not finding that I get much from traditional conferences these days and the un-conference format appeals to me. I can't really justify a trip down south to attend one, so I got to thinking that organising my own event would be the only way I'd get to join the fun.

But it's not all about me :-)  We're probably a wee bit behind our neighbours when it comes to digital engagement. And for being such a wee country we don't seem to be as good at sharing our stories. Where we're probably a bit further ahead though is the way central and local government works together, and in partnership working more generally - we just don't talk about it enough!

So I mooted the idea of a GovCamp for Scotland in various places at the start of the year, and there were enough expressions of interest to warrant taking things forward. 

Where's it happening?

I've attended some brilliant events at the Informatics Forum in Edinburgh - it really is a brilliant, inspiring space. It's pretty central as well - with lots of nice pubs nearby for the partaking of post camp sherberts... 

The folk who work there are also rather brilliant - I hope some of them will be able to participate. 

When's it happening?

Don't worry, it doesn't conflict with the World Cup, T in the Park or the Festivals. And it's a Saturday, so you won't have to miss any work. 

Who should attend?
Govcamp isn't just for gov or techie types.  If you have any interest at all in any aspect of digital engagement in Scotland then you should seriously consider coming along.

There will be lots of gov and techie types there though, so it'll be great way to make connections.

What's on the agenda?

Nothing as yet (see above), but here are some of the topics that might come up (I've pinched most of these from LocalGovCamp Yorkshire and Humber which happened this weekend just gone): 
  • Social media and efficiencies
  • Our digital future – what does it look like?
  • Digital inclusion/exclusion
  • Libraries and social media
  • Online content strategy for local/central government
  • Connecting, public culture and cuts – how the social web can help cultural institutions connect with the public
  • Stuff you can do with Flickr
  • Enterprise 2.0 – deploying social technologies within our organisations to improve communications
  • Open data – what steps do we need to get us sharing our data?
  • Free and good enough technologies – the next stage of digital services development?
  • Smart cities and the internet of things
  • Social Media Surgeries – is anyone holding these in Scotland (or something similar)?
  • Engaging less able people by the use of virtual walks/events in their area or field of interest
  • Front-line social media: engagement, consultation and learning
  • Does the growth in social and geo-sensative gaming have any implications for government?
  • Innovative responses to emergencies 
  • Do we need a Scottish version of 
How do I sign up?
Sign up (it's free!) at

Can I help out?
Yes please!  There's still a fair bit of organising to do. 

Get in touch via
Hope to see you there!