With the COVID-19’s continued devastating effects on our health and our economy, it’s clear that the pandemic will remain an enormous challenge well into 2021. And as we’ve been called to grapple with the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and countless others, we are also called to combat the systemic racism that has permeated America’s history and present. We are facing multiple crises, and are challenged with the question of how to build a more equitable government that can deliver positive outcomes to those who need them most.
Whether it is the crash of unemployment websites across the country, the difficulties and inequalities small businesses face in accessing loans, or the distribution of vaccines, COVID-19 has laid bare very real structural and technical gaps in our government institutions that are affecting the government’s ability to deliver services. With the inauguration of President Biden just a few weeks ago, we can expect many policy proposals to try to address these shortcomings.
Government can be a force for good, but we must ensure that access to and delivery of government services is equitable. In this virtual conversation, you’ll hear from a panel of technologists and public servants on what a new administration can do to effectively and equitably implement policy, the importance of bringing technical leadership in from the start, and other ways we can build a government that meets the needs of the public in the digital age.