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The term “Civic tech” is subject to multiple definitions and interpretations. Generally, it refers to a vast number of digital tools that aim to bring citizens closer to the political process by transforming the workings of democracy through a renewal of their forms of engagement.

These different tools can, for example, improve or promote:

  • Information dissemination: for projects, political decisions, etc.
  • Dialogue between elected officials or public services and citizens: social networks, application to reach elected officials and dialogue with them.
  • Citizen consultation: questionnaires, surveys, gathering of opinions and preferences.
  • Citizen contribution: “reporting apps”, crowdsourcing tools, ideas and projects proposal tool.
  • Data sharing: open data.

These digital tools are most often either backed by public institutions, which may call on public or private service providers for the deployment of the tool, or by the civil society.

A Swiss Barometer of Civic Tech

This questionnaire is the first edition of the Swiss Barometer of Civic Tech, launched by the Urban Sociology Laboratory (LaSUR) of EPFL.

It is intended for actors from Swiss public authorities who have set up or wish to set up civic tech tools.

Its main objectives are to:

  • Identify and map the practices (technologies and uses) of swiss cities, communes and cantons, and the actors involved in civic techs at national level.
  • Produce and share knowledge on these practices at a national and international scale.
  • Encourage the sharing of experiences and the collaboration between cities, territories and cantons on this topic.
  • Create, in time, a network of partners and experts in Switzerland based on the sharing of knowledge and experience.
  • Period: 2019

Project director / coordinator: Armelle Hausser, Jean-François Lucas

LASUR team: Vincent Kaufmann

Partnership: République et Canton de Genève

Funding / mandator: République et Canton de Genève

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