Category Archives: Civic Innovation in Chicago

Damaged Vehicle Claim = Civic Engagement

Lots of people in my professional life talk about “civic engagement”. Everybody seems to want it. Fran Spielman reports in today’s Sun-Times that the City Clerk’s office had received over 3,100 damage claims due to potholes. That’s thousands of people engaging.

While we don’t always think of civic engagement as people filling out forms and claims, this is civic engagement at it’s core. Thousands of people going through a multi-step process to get reimbursed for a weaknesses of the civic infrastructure— and being paid back by the taxpayers— is about as engaged as one can be. Each year, the Chicago City Clerk‘s office processes thousands of claims for damaged vehicles.



On the launch of Crime and Punishment in Chicago

Smart Chicago Collaborative is proud to launch our latest Civic Works Project: Crime and Punishment in Chicago. This project is a collaborative effort between Smart Chicago, FreeGeekChicago, and the Chicago Justice Project.

Chicago Police Department Memorial at Buckingham Fountain

Photo by Chris Smith / Flikr

The Crime and Punishment in Chicago project provides an index of data sources regarding the criminal justice system in Chicago. We aggregate sources of data, how this data is generated, how to get it, and what data is unavailable. This project is a key way we are using the Civic Works grant to use data journalism to uncover the value of data and cover the stories behind the data.