27 Mar

Well, this is the inagural post here, so it might be a good time to introduce myself.

I’m Michael Harris, and I’m a long time Government webmaster, having spent the past eight years working in the sector dealing with issues of web management and communication.

My current assignment is as a web manager for medium-sized trading Government enterprise in the environmental sector. I’ve been there for the last 2 1/2 years, and took over what was a outdated, poorly managed online communications infrastructure and have since had to drag it kicking and screaming into the new millennium. The environment hadn’t had a permanent web manager for nearly three years, so of course while the original intent of the systems and services was sound, there had been no strategic management or direction, and as such had been left to just fall by the wayside and held together with duct tape and bandaids.

I’ve been wanting to set this blog up for a while now, partly to share my experiences in eGovernment and hopefully to help my counterparts and opposite numbers share their expeirence, knowledge, and whatever is left of their brains after-hours to help deliver better results for constitutiants. Sounds like a big hairy audacious goal, but considering government agency websites are for the most part funded by public money, it behooves Government webmasters to deliver a sound, productive service which delivers the services, tools, information and systems citizens need to effictively interact with and use their services.

It’s also part catharsis and diary of the lessons I’ve learned in the process of doing this. I’m hoping that some of my learnings and insight will help out my counterparts and others in the sector, and maybe inspire them to try something new while pursuing the goal of enabling engaged, involved and active constituents and giving them the tools in the online space to participate and interact with what is traditionally a closed shop.

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