WebNews                                            June 5th 2015 |  Vol 18, Issue 2

CTG's Theresa Pardo Selected for Government Technology's "Top 25 Doers, Dreamers, Drivers" 

CTG Director and UAlbany Research Associate Professor Dr. Theresa A. Pardo has been named one of Government Technology's Top 25 Doers, Dreamers & Drivers. The GT Top 25 includes individuals and teams who exemplify transformative use of technology that's improving the way government does business and serves its citizens.


Dr. Pardo was selected in part for her exemplary leadership of the Center for Technology in Government and the pursuit of its mission of fostering public-sector innovation through applied research, knowledge sharing and collaborative problem-solving. Dr. Pardo also serves as Open NY Adviser to New York State's Governor Andrew Cuomo, an appointed member of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) National Advisory Committee (NAC), and as International Advisor to the E-Government Committee for the China Information Association. In addition, Dr. Pardo is President of the Digital Government Society, a global multi-disciplinary organization of scholars and practitioners interested in the development and impacts of digital government.


Showcased in the April issue of Government Technology magazine, this year's list includes a California-based entrepreneur who placed a $23 million bet on new companies in the gov tech space; government innovation and performance officers who are reinventing how agencies acquire and use technology, as well as how they measure the results; and CIOs and elected officials who are revolutionizing the bedrock systems and infrastructure that power government service delivery and public safety.


For more information on Government Technology magazine and the other GT Top 25 winners, please click here.

Four Cities Kickoff Effort to Combat Urban Blight

On May 7th, the cities of Schenectady, Troy, Amsterdam and Gloversville and the Center for Technology in Government kicked off a pilot program to allow critical information sharing of code enforcement-related data so that communities can take proactive steps to combat urban blight. The pilot program is funded by a grant from the New York Department of State.


Throughout New York State, local leaders are working together to address the increasingly persistent and costly problem of urban blight. Sharing information among cities has been recognized as a powerful tool in combating urban blight and in reducing the impact of distressed and vacant problems on critical public serivces such as public safety and on economic development efforts.


"This pilot project is an investment in an early warning system to help our municipalities intervene in distressed properties before they fall into a cycle of blight," said New York Secretary of State Cesar A. Perales. "A regional approach is critical and these cities from the Capital Region and Mohawk Valley, with the leadership of the City of Schenectady, have committed to working together to identify strategies to combat urban blight in a truly groundbreaking effort."


On average, a single depressed property can cost a municipality tens of thousands per year in direct and indirect costs. Direct costs include code enforcement, administration, engineering and property maintenance. Indirect costs include uncollected taxes on distressed properties, devaluation of adjacent properties and impact on city services such as police and fire calls. This project will develop a shared code enforcement information resource providing unprecedented consistency in code enforcement, improved government efficiencies, new opportunities for inter-governmental cooperation, and more informed public and private decision-making.


See more in the Daily Gazette.

CTG is Lead Partner in Increasing Capability of Government Leaders in Egypt

Staff from the University at Albany's Center for Technology in Government (CTG) spent a week in Cairo, Egypt, working with Egypt's National Management Institute (NMI) as part of Microsoft's 4Afrika School of Government (SOG). CTG provided the NMI team and other Egyptian government officials with the knowledge and tools necessary to begin to directly provide executive development courses from CTG's Leadership Academy.  


Microsoft's 4Afrika Initiative, overseen by Lutz Ziob, Dean of Microsoft's 4Afrika SOG program, was launched in February 2013 to help accelerate Africa's economic development and to improve its global competitiveness through innovation, affordable access to technology, and skills.  One component of the 4Afrika program is the SOG program, which aims to build the innovation capacity of government leaders throughout the countries of Africa. CTG is the lead global content provider for the 4Afrika SOG.


"The 4Afrika SOG program provides a forum for government leaders in Africa to be exposed to the latest ideas in public sector technology innovation and innovation management.  Through the SOG, the CTG Leadership Academy program exposes government leaders to a set of concepts, tools, and techniques critical to the unique role they, as government leaders, play in ensuring that their governments have the policy, management and technology capability necessary to fully realize the potential of innovations such as mobile technologies, cloud computing, sensors and big data," said Dr. Theresa Pardo, Director of CTG. Dr. Pardo and Donna Canestraro, Leadership Institute Director at CTG, facilitated this session in Cairo working together with Eng. Sameh Dedair, CEO of NMI and Eng. Walid Al.Engbawy, Human Capacity Development General Manager at NMI.


The primary function of the April program was a 'Train the Trainer' workshop. The workshop was designed to transfer course content as well as the instructional resources for delivering a CTG Leadership Academy course to the NMI team.  A unique aspect of the 4Afrika SOG program is a focus on knowledge transfer both in the form of direct executive development and through Train the Trainer programs. This dual focus makes it possible for Ministry Leaders and NMI staff to both gain the knowledge and skills from each course and transfer that knowledge to colleagues across the Egyptian government.  "The Train the Trainer component of this program leverages investments in capability being made by all parties - Microsoft, CTG and of course, the governments themselves, and expands the impact by building local capability to directly deliver CTG's technology innovation and management leadership programs on an ongoing basis," said Ms. Canestraro.


To read more, click here.

CTG Program Director wins UAlbany President's Award

CTG Program Director Donna Canestraro is a recipient of a 2015 UAlbany President's Award for Excellence in Professional Service. At a ceremony for all faculty, professional staff, and student honorees, President Robert Jones (pictured right) and Senior Vice Provost William Hedberg (pictured left) presented Donna with her award. Each year, the University at Albany honors special members of its community with Excellence Awards denoting exceptional contributions to the University, its faculty and students, as well as SUNY, New York State, and beyond.