Announcing the First-Ever San Francisco Datapalooza

A new platform for civic innovation has arrived. The City and County of San Francisco is proud to announce that it will be hosting a feature event — called a “Datapalooza” — on October 17th to highlight local innovators that are transforming open data into valuable new products and services. This celebratory showcase will include ten entrepreneurs that answered a call-to-action from the White House Office of Science & Technology Policy, the California Governor’s Office of Business & Economic Development, and the San Francisco Office of Civic Innovation.

The Datapalooza story starts roughly 100 days ago at a “Data Jam” that took place in City Hall. At that event, fifty corporate entrepreneurs came together with government leaders to brainstorm how open data could be used to address many of the housing problems that were articulated within Mayor Ed Lee’s 2013 State of the City Address. That day, groups broke out to deep-dive into issues like homelessness, energy efficiency, building safety, building health, and new housing finance. The top ideations were voted on by the attendees and cross-functional volunteers signed up to deliver them.

The Data Jam’s experiment as a new type of public-private partnership has been very fruitful as demonstrated by this selection of Datapalooza showcase participants:

  • Appalicious: developed Neighborhood Score; a mobile application designed to provide an overall health and sustainability score, block-by-block for every neighborhood in the city of San Francisco.
  • Building Eye: makes building and planning information easier to find and understand by mapping what’s happening in your city.
  • Splunk: a globally successful corporation that produces software for searching, monitoring, and analyzing machine-generated big data via a web-style interface.
  • Project Homeless Connect: with a mission to connect homeless San Franciscans with the care they need to move forward, this nationally recognized organization is levering mobile technology to better connect people with available resources.

These companies provide evidence that wholesale government data can be transformed into retail products and services that not only drive business growth, but also help the government achieve its goals. Other accomplishments from the Data Jam include the HouseFacts data standard, which was pioneered by Code for America, a national leader in civic innovation. HouseFacts is a data protocol that empowers cities to share building safety, health and usage data.

In addition to the entrepreneur’s showcase, other programmatic elements of the Datapalooza will include keynote speeches from national leaders in the open data movement and announcements of new data resources that will be made available by the San Francisco government. Logistically, the Datapalooza will take place within the VERGE San Francisco conference at the Palace Hotel from 9:00 AM until 1:00 PM this Thursday. Tickets available here.

San Francisco has been an open government pioneer for years. It’s first-ever Datapalooza will be another important milestone in that constantly evolving process of civic innovation.

San Francisco Office of Civic Innovation

The Office of Civic Innovation helps make government more…

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