Design Public 5 set in motion!

9:23 am – Aditya welcomes the audience to the Design Public 5 and introduces Design Public-talks about the idea- that of seeking ways to improve governance-asks if design and innovation contribute together to enhance citizen experience.

9: 25 am: Aditya talks about the Bihar innovation Lab-says that it was an idea seeded at one of the earlier DP sessions.About the second Design Public-he says – that it led to collaborative thinking which took the form of Adianta School -bringing innovation in the realm of higher education.

9:29 am: Aditya invites Namrata, director for Innovation, CKS and  the moderator for this session- to start the Breakfast dialogue discussing the three Perspectives of Citizen-Centric Governance. The participants of this session include Somnath Bharti, former Law Minister, Government of Delhi; Sunil Abraham, Executive Director, Center for Internet and Society and Aditya Dev Sood, CEO, CKS and Chairman, BIL.

9:30 am– Namrata urges the audience to open their minds to understanding a new way about theorising governance innovation and drafting out the diverse forms that it can take. Namrata introduces the panel to the audience focusing specifically the three distinct schools of thought that each of the panelists represent.

9:33 am– Somnath Bharti talks about mohalla sabha and the idea of direct participation- is an ideal type of citizen governance that is the founding principle of the organisation that he belongs to.

9:34 am.- Talking about the ineffectiveness of the various institutions of the government, Somnath asserts that good governance should be ‘by the Indians, for the Indians’.

9:35 am– Sharing his experience as the former Law Minister of Delhi, Somnath says that those in power need to be the core from which the change must radiate out. He urges the professionals and social entrepreneurs to

9:37 am– Sunil Abraham begins by initiating the discussion on ‘multi-stakeholderism’, a model where interests of each stakeholder is maximized at the negotiation table.

9:39 am– Sunil shares the importance of transforming the citizen into a key stakeholder in governance and responds to Somnath’s comment about joining politics and says that the civil society has very specific role in governance and must be understood in its own right.

9:40 am– Somnath responds to Sunil’s comment about politics and civil society. Drawing from his experience in office, he says that he came across several instances of corruption focusing on the significant role that technology can play in checking the practices of the government and making its function transparent, open and citizen-centric. Says that we need citizens to be constant participants in government.

9:43 am– Namrata approaches Aditya for his views on open governance.

9:45 am– Aditya begins by talking about the Anna movement and what he took away from it. (See also: Seeding the idea)

9:46 am-  Aditya believes that there should be a cross-sectoral dialogue that is inclusive and participatory in nature. Talking about failures of systems and institutions ,he asserts the significance of having a clear goal of being citizen centric. He questions the definition and the sustenance of a mandate for the people.

9:47 am– Somnath responds to Aditya and says that very few departments in the government have a coherent policy document. He says that the very idea of ‘governance’ came under the scanner. He agrees with Aditya’s comment about the ‘missing mandate’ and says that the citizen should be made central to any governance innovation. He says that the future of governance lies in the initiative taken by its citizens.

9:50 am– Namrata directs a query about citizen activism and requests the panelists to talk about the ways that can be adopted to bring about a change- reads out the many approaches including -open data government- asks if they are effective

9:51 am- Sunil asserts that corruption-busting technology itself is in a cycle of constant innovation. We need professionalism in governance

9:52 am- Talking about the experience of civil society movements at a grassroot level, Sunil says that it would be simplistic to imply that technology is the solution to corruption. On the contrary he believes that there needs to be a constant evolution of practices and structures, enabled by technology to check corruption.

9:53 am: Aditya- Asks the panelists if social media -feedback mechanism- can be used to talk back to the state- Can it be a new way of into the implementing citizen-centric goverance.

 9:55 am– Sunil links openness and transparency to power. Transparency expectations, he says, must be directly proportional to power. He says that we must make the powerful transparent focusing on the small data at the top instead of the big data at the bottom for open governance. He calls this approach- the maximisation/optimisation process

10:00 am– Somnath agrees with Sunil’s point about making the powerful accountable and making data open and transparent. Somnath interacts with the audience probing them to hazard a guess on how much they think is spent on MLA elections in Delhi.

10:01 am– Somnath says that we must resolve to elect functionaries whose moral character and integrity will guide them to form better policies for the people.

10:02 am- Namrata requests Somnath to further elaborate on the idea of citizen governance

10:03 am– Somnath says that all citizens must be given a chance to be heard.As an elected representatiove of the people, he believes that the people must elect those who treat their problems seriously. He says that platforms must be created to give citizens a chance to be heard

10: 05 am : Aditya asks the panelists how can we do better in terms of public services-for the people abiding by the urban network culture- can we collaborate them with the service providers- via technology to facilitate services for them?

10: 09 am: Aditya says that the Aam admi party’s win signals at a demographic shift- if that is right- the urban citizens are demanding a change.

10:09 am– Sunil says that the citizens experience hopelessness which is slowly being overcome. The goals of the elected officials must match the aspirations of the people, building trust as an effective channel of communication.

 10:10 am– Somnath agrees with Sunil and gives an example of a digital portal that was designed to enable citizens to communicate directly with the government officials.

 10:13 am– Somnath says that the citizen must be empowered to challenge and question the government officials which will restructure the ways governance is carried out, making the officials directly accountable to the people. he says that the ideals of democracy need to be upheld.

 10:15 am– Sunil says that Open data needs to draw in perspectives from diverse approaches to make transparency a workable process rather that a static concept. He says that credibility alliance norms need to be questioned which link corporates to NGOs.

 10:18 am: Namrata opens the floor to the audience.

10: 28 am- Participant 1 – “Will a privatized government be more effective, that is, if principles of the private sector are applied to governance, will that make the government more effective?

10: 20 am- Participant 2- ‘Is the bureaucracy an important element of governance and why has the political class ignored the agency of bureaucracy in ensuring citizen centric governance?’

10: 23 am: MP Ranjan, says that he believes that our government- does not understand the word ‘design’-wants to know is where are the new systems going to come from-are the mohalla shaba people going to design the system for us? I think what we need to do first and foremost is to define design- and read out the ways it can have an interface with governance.  (See also: Design and innovation to alter local conditions)

10:24 am: Somnath asks, ;Who is reforming what?’. He says that he was the first minister who wanted to see and read all the files instead of just signing on them. According to Somnath, British laws and systems must be reworked and the governance system in India needs to take a ‘U-turn’. Responding to a direct question, Somnath says that changing the government from the inside or from the outside, are strategies which will become effective only if citizens are included in the process.

10:28 am– Sunil talks about Lirnesia, a technology innovation project in SriLanka which was built on the model of recycling innovation. He says in the golden age of PIL litigation and regulation, we need to improvise policy regulations to include the citizen in its design framework.

10:35 am– Aditya agrees with MP Ranjan and says that design is a process that is participatory in nature which looks for problem resolution through definition of problems not in isolation but in collaboration.

10:35 am–  Aditya views Design Public as one such platform that facilitates dialogues among like-minded innovators and thought leaders to develop solutions to remedy the gaps in the systems. With this the breakfast briefing comes to an end.

10: 36 am : Arun Yogi takes to the podium and commences the yoga session.


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