Manifesto for Agile Government


I'm sure that many readers of this blog have read the Manifesto for Agile Software Development. Having worked in government over the past year, I wondered how a similar manifesto for government, created by a group of people who would radically want to improve existing structures, would look like. Here is my take.

Manifesto for Agile Government We are uncovering better ways for government by doing it and helping others do it.
Through this work we have come to value:
  • Individuals and interactions over processes and authority
  • Tangible improvements and transparency over comprehensive regulations
  • Citizen collaboration over paternalism and enforcement
  • Empowered civil servants over procedures and bureaucracies
  • Responding to change over following a plan
That is, while there is value in the items on the right, we value the items on the left more.

Note that while the above manifesto proposal is my work, the idea is hardly novel, as you can quickly discover through a simple search. In particular, I found Mark Simmonds's presentation at the 2009 Agile Conference describing many of the problems I'm facing regarding agility in the public sector.

Please have a look at the original Manifesto for Agile Software Development, compare it with my proposal, comment and suggest changes and additions. Can agile government be the answer to our quest of doing more with less? What are the essential principles and practices of agile government? How can agile government deal with free-riding and corruption? How can agility coexist with accountability? What is the role of information technology in agile government? It is an enabler or is it like the less-loved tools appearing on the right hand side of the Manifesto for Agile Software Development? How can we move toward agile government? I'd really welcome your thoughts.

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Last modified: Friday, November 19, 2010 5:50 pm

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