Harvard University’s Ash Center for Democratic Governance today announced GSA’s Challenge.gov as one of the Top 25 Innovations in Government. Challenge.gov is the federal government’s online portal for running challenge and prize competitions. Challenge.gov allows the government to crowdsource solutions to problems in a contest format, bringing diversity in solutions and contributors. This is a pay-for-performance model that saves money on key initiatives and broadly drives innovation within and beyond government.
Launched on September 7, 2010, Challenge.gov has hosted more than 260 crowdsourcing competitions, in which federal agencies have awarded upwards of 200 prizes. It now averages six new challenge and prize competitions a month. Around 60 agencies have used the platform to help solve everything from stopping illegal robocalls to developing 100 miles-per-gallon vehicles. Agencies are increasingly turning to Challenge.gov to conduct software and apps challenges, to meet the vision of a more citizen-centric digital government.
The Innovations in American Government Award competition features government initiatives representing the dedicated efforts of city, state, federal, and tribal governments and addresses a host of policy issues including crime prevention, economic development, environmental and community revitalization, employment, education, and health care. Selected by a cohort of policy experts, researchers, and practitioners, four finalists and one winner of the Innovations in American Government Award will be announced in the Fall. Today’s DigitalGov blog describes other federal programs that were selected as finalists, including several programs that have conducted their own challenge and prize competitions and worked in partnership with the GSA Challenge.gov team.
The Innovations in American Government Award was created by the Ford Foundation in 1985 to shine a light on effective government programs. Since its inception, over 400 government innovations across all jurisdictional levels have been recognized.