Past Events

Past Events

May 24, 2021

Delivering Digital Services to the Public in the Pandemic and Beyond

The challenges and opportunities of the past year have demonstrated the necessity of digital government services, from creating access to online events for older adults, to creating a centralized COVID-19 hub of information for users searching for up-to-date government service offerings, policies, and restrictions. Despite hiring freezes and limited funding, digital teams at both the state and local levels have worked in innovative ways to ensure that residents are able to address vital needs by applying a user-centered lens to complex directives, guidance, and information. Digital teams have helped governments become more agile in the face of uncertainty and rapidly changing circumstances. May 24, 2021 03:00 PM in Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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April 21, 2021

Will There Be Justice for George Floyd? Lessons from the Walter Scott Case

As Derek Chauvin stands trial for murder, the nation is waiting to know, "Will there be justice for George Floyd?" This begs the question: What does it mean to achieve "justice" in the wake of a police killing?  

The Beeck Center for Social Impact + Innovation, The George Washington University Law School, and the Justice Innovation Lab are convening a discussion with people who struggled with this question in the wake of a 2015 police killing: the murder of Walter Scott in North Charleston, SC. They will draw from their experiences during the Scott case, a rare example of where a police officer was successfully prosecuted, and offer their perspective on what is needed to achieve justice.

  Panelists:
  • Anthony Scott, Walter Scott's brother
  • Feidin Santana, an eyewitness who videotaped the shooting
  • Scarlett Wilson, head of the state prosecution team in Charleston
  • Jared Fishman, head of the federal prosecution team and current Beeck Center fellow.
Moderator:
  • Laura Jarrett, Anchor of CNN’s Early Start
EVENT DATE: Wednesday, April 21, 1 - 2pm ET

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December 16, 2020

CounterPower: Future Making + Public Institutions

Public interest technologists have an opportunity to (re)build our public systems to be liberated from the ones we are simultaneously dismantling. As builders, makers, and creators, it is common for us to produce tools that "fix" the inefficiencies we see around us. But often, these end up as band-aid reforms that disguise systemic harms more efficiently. How might we envision public interest efforts that center not just modern digital tools but also a liberatory imagination and abolitionist practices? This webinar will create space for us to learn how we can show up today for our collective futures. Speakers:

  • Mutale Nkonde, CEO of AI For the People
  • Khara Jabola Carolus, Executive Director of Hawaii State Commission on the Status of Women
  • Maya Wagoner, User Experience Designer at Brooklyn Public Library
  • Georgia Bullen, Executive Director of SimplySecure

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December 10, 2020

Crash Course on Tech Work in Government: What *else* do you need to know?

Joining government brings incredible opportunities to solve hard problems, fix under-resourced systems, and help people at a scale no other sector can. It’s incredibly rewarding work, but also incredibly challenging. The landscape is different. The rules are, too. As new waves of technologists raise their hands to consider government service, we’ll unpack some of those differences and explain how these rules are actually superpowers based on our experiences joining teams at federal agencies as well as the White House where we led policy, projects, and teams focused on using data, design, and technology to improve service delivery. We’ll also touch on how these teams (and others in gov) hire.

In this 90-minute webinar, gov tech veterans Erie Meyer, Kathy Pham, and Cori Zarek will fill you in on the under-the-radar topics to look out for as a new wave of techies join government. Their combined experiences include the United States Digital Service, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Federal Trade Commission, White House Office of Science Technology Policy, National Archives, and the private and social sectors. This event is co-sponsored by the Georgetown University Beeck Center for Social Impact + Innovation and the Harvard Kennedy School Shorenstein Center for Media, Politics, and Public Policy. You should attend if you're interested in joining a government team and want to learn about all the different issues that may not be out front in the recruitment and hiring process. Bring your questions and assumptions and we'll unpack it all.

EVENT DATE: Thursday, Dec. 10, 2:30 - 4pm ET

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November 19, 2020

Reforming Unemployment Insurance with Bold New Initiatives and the Future of Work

The pandemic has left 21.5 million workers unemployed and an additional 11.5 million workers with reduced pay. State unemployment insurance systems have failed to keep pace and millions of workers are waiting for pandemic-related benefits. Recent proposals by the Day One Project, The Century Foundation and New America identify solutions to the UI crisis calling for federal coordination, deploying digital service teams to clear the applicant backlog and which would support the distribution of additional funds. Additionally, organizations such as U.S. Digital Response and the State Software Collaborative at the Beeck Center are working on ways to coordinate the broader ecosystem to implement the future state of unemployment insurance delivery. This two-part event, hosted in partnership with New America will explore the Digital Benefits Coalition, and then dive deeper into needed reforms to unemployment insurance and forward-looking plans to build a more resilient work environment in the United States.

Panel 1: Launching the Digital Benefits Coalition (11:30-12:15)

  • Robin Carnahan (@RobinCarnahan) Fellow, Data + Digital, Georgetown University Beeck Center Fmr. Secretary of State, Missouri
  • Amanda Renteria (@AmandaRenteria) CEO, Code for America
  • Trooper Sanders (@TrooperSanders) CEO, Benefits Data Trust
  • Tomicah Tillemann (moderator) (@tomicahtd) Director, Digital Impact and Governance Initiative New America

Panel 2 Identifying Solutions to the Unemployment Insurance Crisis (12:15-1:00)

  • Adam Bobrow (@afbobrow) Founder and CEO of Foresight Resilience Strategies
  • Alyssa Levitz (@USDResponse) Unemployment Insurance team lead, U.S. Digital Response
  • Alberto Rodriguez (@Arodalv) Senior Program Manager, New Practice Lab & PIT University Network New America
  • Cori Zarek (moderator) (@corizarek) Director of Data + Digital, Beeck Center @BeeckCenter

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November 13, 2020

Public Interest Technology University Network (PIT-UN) 2020 Virtual Convening – Election Security

New America hosts this keynote panel, featuring Beeck Center Fellow Robin Carnahan. The election may be over, but its shadow has a long tail. For the last year, election security has been a leading concern for governments and constituents. PIT practitioners have been right in the thick of it, working to stanch disinformation, protect voting infrastructure, and make the path to the polls easier. Today, our speakers will discuss the role of PIT in election security – what we’ve learned during this election cycle, and how we can use the information in the future.

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October 29, 2020

Hiding in Plain Sight Part 3: Getting It Done – Making the Allocation to Diverse Managers

To close out the Hiding in Plain Sight series, join a discussion with representatives of institutions that have prioritized and selected diverse managers. More than making the case, what does it take to get it done when you're ready to forge ahead with the increasing the diversity of managers in your portfolio? Hear from decision makers who have not only stated their commitment but also put in the work to source diverse firms, push their consultants, re-consider their criteria, and close the deal. Moderated by Erika Seth Davies, and featuring guests Bert Feuss, Former Senior VP, Investments, Silicon Valley Community Foundation and Anyori Hernandez, Emerging Manager Program, NY State Office of the Comptroller.

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October 28, 2020

Improving Life Outcomes for Youth of the Foster Care System

In the United States, approximately one in 17 children will spend time in the foster care system, yet it continually fails to deliver desired outcomes. Think of Us — a non-profit that aims to successfully transition foster youth into a prosperous adulthood—recently spent time exploring how the system works for older foster youth who are aging out of care in 5 jurisdictions across the country. Through their research they identified what they consider to be the three missing pillars for positioning older foster youth for better life outcomes.

Join us for a sneak-peak presentation of what they learned, followed by a discussion about implications for improving the foster care system across the nation.

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October 22, 2020

What It Takes to Support Data and Tech Capacity in Government Transitions

Transitions are a way of life in government — whether it’s shifts in agency strategies, new leadership, or a change in administration, government folks are some of the most resilient and flexible there are because the only constant is change. In our work, we support governments as they use cutting-edge tools and practices to deliver services and carry out their missions — work that should continue amid transitions. In this conversation, we discuss strategies and approaches that government workers can take to ensure our important work to use data, design, technology, and other modern tools and practices continue to advance year over year. We will also briefly discuss some of the important questions that teams that plan administration transitions should be asking when thinking about capacity within agencies.

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October 21, 2020

Reimagining the Budgets and Oversight of Large Government Tech Projects

Major government software projects are more likely to fail than succeed. A lot has to go wrong for that to happen, but the seeds of that failure are planted way back at the budgeting phase, when the legislature or Congress first takes up a project or policy. Beeck Fellows Robin Carnahan and Waldo Jaquith lead the conversation on how by changing the budgeting and oversight process for these projects, back when they’re first being planned, they can be set up for success instead of failure.

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