There is growing interest from Cities, Jurisdictions and other Organization to participate with community members through mobile devices and the web. The Open311 standard is just one example.
There are a number of potential citizen interactions, for example:
Opinions expressed by constituents to their representatives.
Requests for assistance.
A primary interaction, and the one we are focused on, is the reporting of an “issue” of concern - a “request” by a person to bring attention to a non-emergency problem. The Open311 standard, CitySourced, and SeeClickFixed all speak to this.
Currently each City or Jurisdiction has it’s own “311” contact system, hopefully with an openly accessible API. Because there is an access key required to use a Jurisdiction’s API, and because of variations in Jurisdiction’s implementation or use of 3rd party systems (e.g. SeeClickFix), all mobile and web apps are specific to ONE jurisdiction.
If you live in San Jose, and work in Cupertino, you currently need to 2 mobile apps.
If you are in San Francisco, and want to report an issue, you will need to install a 3rd app for SF.
We propose to build a “311 Gateway”, which will provide a uniform, RESTful, standard API interface. This will allow mobile developers to code against a single API, yet their app will work across a wider geographic area.