A Civic Technologist's Practice Guide

Buy this book: ‘A Civic Technologist’s Practice Guide’

Cyd Harrell’s “A Civic Technologist’s Practice Guide” is the book we’ve always needed, but wouldn’t have been possible until now thanks in no small part to the unparalleled experience she’s accrued over the years working at Code for America, 18F, California Administrative Office of the Courts, and other service design-focused environments inside and outside of public service.

Photo: General Services Administration Office of Communications

Backpacks, bean bags and blue jeans: My take on ‘tech titans,’ 18F and USDS

Apparently, in 2021, there are people who still refuse to recognize the holistic, energetic and sustainable impact 18F and the U.S. Digital Services has — and continues to have — on keeping the federal government digital services industry and profession relevant and attractive to highly-qualified designers, developers, product and project managers and anyone generally interested in well-functioning U.S. Government technology.

Working in Public: The Making and Maintenance of Open Source Software

Working in public

Nadia Eghbal’s “Working in Public: The Making and Maintenance of Open Source Software” is a deep and intellectual dive into the nuances of open source, yet still an excellent resource for government officials to both understand its role and importance in building civic technology, but is also relatable in many ways to the concepts of public service and public goods.

Photo: GOV.UK

Roadmapping government websites

What’s great about about the public roadmap, particularly for large government institutions, is that they show there is a plan, but they are also a powerful demonstration of civic openness.

Good Services

Good government services

In their new book “Good Services: How to design services that work,” former UK Government Design Director Lou Downe offers the public sector an invaluable playbook to delivering government services that are in inclusive and intentional.

Robin Steinberg speaks at TED2018 - The Age of Amazement, April 10 - 14, 2018, Vancouver, BC, Canada. Photo: Bret Hartman / TED

Rethinking bail

TED Radio Hour host Manoush Zomorodi’s conversation with The Bail Project’s Robin Steinberg is incredibly insightful and inspiring. Steinberg shares her work supporting those who can’t afford to pay cash bail, which ultimately leads to a downward spiral of injustice.

Design thinking in the intelligence community

The NavalX Centers for Adaptive Warfighting hosted a discussion on design thinking with Office of the Director of National Intelligence Director of Lateral Innovation Katherine Tobin. Tobin shared her design thinking journey and how ODNI incorporates it into its work.

Distributed teams

Free webinar: ‘Quickly Shifting to Distributed Teams in Government’

To support government teams quickly shifting to distributed work during the COVID-19 pandemic, CivicActions will host a free webinar — repeated daily the week of March 16 — to share best practices and answer questions from the government community at large. Topics to be covered include operations, communications, security and productivity in a distributed work environment.


GitHub opens up about its relationship with ICE

In a post on the GitHub blog, CEO Nat Friedman publicly addressed the company’s business relationship with U.S. Immigration & Customs Enforcement, its opinion on the current administration’s immigration policy and “the principles by which we make decisions in these areas.”

The Shadow War

Winning ‘The Shadow War’

Whether it’s online, on land, underwater or in space, CNN national security correspondent Jim Sciutto’s “The Shadow War: Inside Russia’s and China’s Secret Operations to Defeat America” offers ominous insights into how the United States’ key adversaries are changing the dynamics of national security.