Open Municipalities

The local authorities have a wide affect over the daily lives of its citizens – from education to city planning. However, the municipalities in Israel are not transparent, and only a minority of the citizens are involved in them. The Public Knowledge Workshop seeks to change that.

Our vision is two-sided: we seek to encourage local municipalities to become more transparent, and at the same time to enhance the participation of the citizens in the local politics. Our goal is to build the tool that enables the existence of an open channel of communication between the public and its representatives, that will lead a more democratic method, and empower the people.

We will act within several lanes:

– Making the local budget more transparent and easy to understand

– Developing tools allowing smart tracking of debates and local decisions

– Enabling spreading all sorts of local information on google maps

– Developing or adapting smartphone apps that enables citizens to report on problems happening in their cities, directly to the right office in the council

– Tools allowing the people to comment, make suggestions and participate in discussions with their local representatives.

An example of the potential in this project can be found in the map below, as we and a local movement in Jerusalem have acquired access to some 2,600 assets owned by the city Jerusalem, so that NGO’s, education institutions and others will know the location of city-owned buildings, and apply it for usage.  Not less important, citizens of Jerusalem can keep track of what is been done with their city’s real estate, and have the information to be critical about it, when needed

To see the full data click here (Hebrew)