The broad theme was "Community 2.0" in which participants tried to answer these questions:
- In a world of scarce public resources, how do we take advantage of the 2.0 online, social media, and open source world to help build awesome local communities?
- How can we connect the interested public with 2.0 skills to work with government, community groups, neighborhood associations, local ethnic associations, and more?
- How can our local communities be bold, inclusive, open, accessible, wired and darn right innovative when bottom-up connects with top-down for collaboration?
An attendee named Marc Drummond has blogged a detailed description of how the unconference format worked, including his critique and suggestions. You can see comments from others during and after the conference by viewing the #citycampmn hashtag on Twitter.
I was pleased to see GovDelivery CEO Scott Burns in attendance, as I’d not talked to him since my days at gofast.net in the late 90s when his and many other high tech companies were located in the Lowertown Cyber Village in downtown St. Paul.
Scott gave a condensed version of his October 2011 presentation, posted to Slideshare:
When he put up slide 10 that says:
Leverage the trust that this guy has been building up for years
it caught my attention. It’s that word ‘leverage.’ When coaching leaders on their use of social media, I’ve long emphasized the importance of leveraging one’s influence (for example, see my blog posts here, here, here as well as this guest blog post).
But his phrase "leverage the trust" started me thinking about how it applies to leadership. As a leader, your position automatically puts you in a position of influence. But your behavior over time is the only way to build trust, and that, of course, ratchets up your influence.
Scott’s presentation also got me thinking about how this is true for organizations, too—especially government and its relationship to the citizens it serves. The Edina Citizen Engagement project that I’m working on now with the City of Edina could also be seen as a way for the City to build more trust with its citizens through meaningful online engagement. Will it work? And how will City officials leverage it? Stay tuned.