[@OKau] After the hackathon: 4 classic recipes

Keith Moss keithamoss at gmail.com
Mon Jul 27 07:57:54 UTC 2015

Late reply...

But epic +1 to this thread!

We (the GovHack organisers in Perth) have been thinking along similar lines
and trying to hit on the best means to communicate what, at least for us,
are now the last two big unanswered questions from GovHack:

1) What happens next?

2) What happens for the other 362 days of the year?

This year for the first time we heard question #1 a lot more (aka "How many
startups have formed out of GovHack?") - due in large part to greatly
increased sponsorship and having stronger support and interest from central

Our response at the time was to go around hurriedly writing up a few brief
"success stories" and to collate some rough numbers on projects that
continued on in some form after GovHack.

That did the trick for this year, but it was pretty clear to us that we
need a better story to tell - and a better means of telling it - if GovHack
over here is going to continue to improve and grow quite as solidly as it

So we decided to put some time (and possibly some $$$) aside post-GovHack
to properly write up what would pretty much amount to a longform version of
Steve's blog post and the other thoughts in this thread - likely presented
both as a PDF and in some online clickable/interactive fashion.

Good to know we're all generally on the same page in thinking about this.
Go team! :)



On Sun, 26 Apr 2015 at 13:41 Steve Bennett <stevage at gmail.com> wrote:

> Steven de Costa wrote:
> >With regard to GovHack I think it needs to remain 99% on creating a fun
> atmosphere for developers. Fun in a challenging, learning and connecting
> way. The Govt interest for Apps and ROI on their sponsorships should be in
> the last 1%.
> Cobi wrote:
>> What's the takehome from this braindump? Umm.. if what Steve wrote is
>> partly about showing value from Govhack, perhaps another topic could be 4
>> classic recipes from the perspective of participants' growth, in contrast
>> to project growth?
> Pia wrote:
> >The main benefits of community run hackfests are community development,
> skills, gov engagement, more open data, platform for people to show off
> skills and launch startups or research projects, redefining innovation to
> be meaningful, and showcasing our awesome tech community and the value of
> tech as something to invest in. Also some projects go on to be projects or
> commercialised, but the other benefits are significant.
> I completely agree that the main benefit of GovHack and other similar
> hackathons is not generally the things that get developed. It's the
> community building, the skills development - well, the things Pia mentioned
> really. For me personally, one of the biggest benefits is having a couple
> of concrete stories of struggling with open data to use with government. "I
> spent hours messing around extracting data from PDFs and made some pretty
> catastrophic errors", "I had never seen dealt with data in MapInfo format
> before, so that really slowed me down",
> The point of my post wasn't to limit the range of useful outcomes, but
> just to put names to four specific kinds of tangible outcomes. Maybe
> someone else wants to write a post naming all the other kinds of outcomes
> and benefits :)
> Steve
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