In addition to economic development, public savings, and a higher quality of life, better connectivity can promote more participation in the democratic process.
Next Century Cities, The Democracy Fund, and the Benton Foundation want to promote innovation surrounding ways high-speed Internet fosters participatory democracy and civic engagement. These groups invite communities to apply for a Next Generation Engagement Award.
Winning communities will receive:
- Up to $30,000 for new or existing projects that help citizens become more engaged in the democratic process
- Technical assistance to implement their plans
- Connections with other like-minded municipalities
- At least three communities will be selected for special inaugural Awards
Some examples of eligible projects suggested by Next Century Cities include: participatory budgeting; public transportation and urban planning; involvement in local government deliberations; or community concern reporting and response.
Instructional Webinar on April 20th, Learn More
For communities seeking guidance in applying or just looking for more information, Next Century Cities will host a webinar on April 20th at 3 p.m. ET. The webinar will be available here.
To learn more about the Awards, contact Todd O'Boyle, Deputy Director of Next Century Cities, at Todd(at)NextCentiryCities.org. You can also download a fact sheet on the Awards for more information, along with the online Application, and the Budget, both of which must be submitted by June 15, 2016.
Deb and Todd Talk With Craig About The Awards
You can learn more about the awards and the project in this episode of Craig Settles' Gigabit Nation. He interviewed Deb Socia and Todd O'Boyle from Next Century Cities who provided details about Awards and how participants can learn more.