Data Into Dollars: Clarifying Construction Communications With Civic Insight

August 20, 2014 6:53 am PST | Data into Dollars, Open Data

On the heals of the Unblight Conference, which brought together advocates, policy makers, and technologists to “share lessons about combatting blight and repurposing abandoned parts of communities,” it seems a good time to turn Data Into Dollars toward Civic Insight

Developed in 2012 by Code for America fellows, Civic Insight is an app making government open data about vacancy, code enforcement, and other complicated processes into information citizens can use. It benefits citizens and governments by providing a single, real-time communication stream. 

The citizen-facing side of Civic Insight helps residents transform their communities by providing understandable updates about where they are in the city’s permitting process. Civic Insight pulls government open data and transforms it into clear language with step-by-step progress reports. 

Through Civic Insight, citizens can create watch lists to track specific properties. This is particularly beneficial to developers and real estate professionals, who can track numerous properties and receive real-time alerts. These emails alert citizens to changes in their application or inspection statuses.  

Clarity for residents means the government benefits from fewer enquiries, allowing staff to spend more time on tasks other than answering citizens’ questions. Additionally, Civic Insight provides local governments with a performance dashboard, which highlights trends and improves data-driven decision making. By using a single dashboard, agencies consolidate their workflows to improve cross-government collaboration and efficiency. 


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