Social Media & Innovation Fellow
IBM Center for The Business of Government
600 14th Street, NW Second Floor
Washington, DC 20005
United States
720-396-8805

Darcie Piechowski is the Social Media & Innovation Fellow for the Center for the Business of Government. In this role, Ms. Piechowski looks to explore the inventive ways governmental organizations serve citizens through their use of collaborative platforms and technology.

A Communications & Strategy Manager for IBM’s Public Sector, Ms. Piechowski is responsible for developing and executing innovative initiatives aimed at improving the culture and performance of the organization and its 4,000 consultants and IT specialists. Over the last five years, Ms. Piechowski has also led an executive eminence program through which she helps executives improve their digital eminence through social media and other activities. Prior to her current role, Ms. Piechowski assisted public sector clients in achieving their missions as a consultant with expertise in analytics, business development, and marketing.

Ms. Piechowski received her degree in Business Administration from American University in Washington, DC.

You can connect with Darcie on Twitter or on LinkedIn.

Citizen-Centric Healthcare: Can Citizens Improve Healthcare?

By putting the user at the center, organizations can focus resources and initiatives on providing the best and most needed services. This “citizen-centric” approach takes citizens from passive recipients to active contributors through methods like design thinking, co-creation, and even analytics. This approach can benefit not only the system as a whole but also allows citizens to take ownership of their experience.

Beyond the Lab: Government Innovation in Unlikely Places

While there is certainly a place for these types of organizations and goals, innovation – and the creativity that goes along with it – can be applied to a myriad of organizational issues that may not garner the same attention. In addition, client feedback and user-centered thinking are valuable sources of innovation, which anyone can tap.

Innovation might not be the first thing that comes to mind when thinking of training or loan repayment or immigration information, but that’s exactly what’s taking place with meaningful improvements for end users.

The Responsibility of Government in Building Civic Engagement

We should all see it as part of our civic duty to contribute toward the common good. However, many people do not connect with the governing process in a meaningful way. Perhaps this is where government can do more by further engaging citizens and driving civic awareness.

Fortunately, there are a number of ways, already tested at multiple levels of government, that citizens can interact with public organizations and contribute to improved services for all.  Such examples are summarized below, and provide excellent models for government to enhance citizen engagement.

Two Years Later: The Future of Government Digital Services

One thing is certain, digital is not simply a side project of the White House, but a booming industry and an expected condition of business. The real question becomes not if, but how the government can mature and scale digital services – whether at USDS, across agency digital services teams, out of the 18F program now housed in GSA’s Technology Transformation Service, or elsewhere.

The Future of Government Digital Services – Part II

This post will build on an earlier post, which looked at the future of digital government, by including insights from the “Innovation in the Next Administration” event hosted by Georgetown’s McCourt School of Public Policy and the Beeck Center for Social Impact and Innovation on October 6th.

Artificial Intelligence as a Driver for Innovation

AI is an umbrella term that encompasses a variety of capabilities that allow a computer system to perform tasks normally done by humans. Many people are also familiar with the term Cognitive Computing. Cognitive leverages several AI components, such as Machine Learning, to understand, reason, and learn much like the human brain. Cognitive complements Artificial Intelligence, enabling computers to both think like humans and understand how humans think. Current AI systems and subsystems are able to learn, make decisions, and solve complex problems.

Blockchain for Government

Simply put, Blockchain is a type of distributed ledger that can be likened to bookkeeping, where transactions are recorded as “blocks” and any modifications or related transactions are also recorded and linked creating a connected “chain”. This provides a unique opportunity to address pressing issues government organizations face, such as transparency, fraud detection, and efficient and improved services.

Transparency

Immersive Technology for Government: Part 1 - Virtual Reality

While training is a valuable application for this technology, it is not the only one. There are a number of other opportunities to drive mission results using immersive technologies, including augmented reality. While virtual and augmented reality have been used interchangeably at times, these are two different experiences under the same umbrella of immersive technology. Virtual reality is a fully immersive, computer-generated simulation, which includes visual and auditory inputs. With virtual reality the user is taken out of their real environment.

Immersive Technology Part II - Augmented Reality

While virtual reality has many applications, which were explored in part one of this series, the potential for virtual reality is bound by the need for a user to be completely immersed in a simulated world. Augmented reality, on the other hand, blends the real world with computer-generated components in a way that the two can seamlessly interact. Augmented reality can move with you and can be accessible to anyone with a smart phone.

Drivers transforming government: Engagement

Note:  The IBM Center recently released Seven Drivers Transforming Government, a series of essays exploring key drivers of change in government.

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