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White House Unveils Challenge.gov

Photo: Ritu Jethani

The White House has launched the new Challenge.gov, an online tool provided by the General Services Administration that allows federal agencies to post contests aimed at increasing public involvement with the government.

As part of the Obama administration’s call for an open government, agencies were called upon to leverage challenges and prizes to spur citizen engagement. This new site allows all agencies to post challenges in one place–for free.

“GSA continues to help the administration move toward a more open, citizen-centered government by providing tools that simplify the engagement process for both agencies and citizens,” said Dave McClure, GSA’s associate administrator for citizen services and innovative technologies. “By providing agencies with a no-cost, easy, ready-to-use solution through Challenge.gov, GSA has built upon the successes agencies have already had in using challenges and provided a platform that offers even more uniformity and consistency in how the public engages with their government.”

GSA teamed up with New York-based small business ChallengePost to develop technology and design for the new engagement platform, and paved the way for agencies to leverage the tool free of charge.

Nearly 40 challenges from 16 agencies will debut on Challenge.gov. The site features two GSA challenges:

·         The USA.gov GovGab blog asks members of the public to submit guest blog posts on ways to use government information. Five winners will be chosen and featured one per day during the week of GovGab’s third birthday.

·         Kids.gov seeks creative “infographics” from children that answer the question, “How to Become President?” The goal of the contest is to educate kids on the process of electing president and inspire children to new heights.  The prize is $5,000 (split between one adult and one child).

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