Constitution-Building Technology Fair 2015 - Final Report
Creating a democratic constitution is one of the most challenging processes a nation can embark on. In addition to critical political hurdles to reaching agreement among disparate groups regarding the country’s basic institutional structure and vision for the future, a number of other challenges must be overcome if the constitution-making process is to succeed. These include access to information for the constitution-making body to make sure that its decisions are informed by public sentiment, expert opinion and comparative practice; ensuring transparency in the process so that the general public can follow and understand the deliberations leading to the new constitution; and encouraging public debate and receiving inputs from the public to give the citizenry a sense of ownership over their constitution. Modern constitution makers are increasingly finding solutions to these challenges through the use of information and communications technologies (ICTs). However, these products and practices have not yet been catalogued so that new processes can learn from (and build upon) existing knowledge and experience.
On 16 November 2015 International IDEA, in partnership with Google Docs and Google Ideas, organized the ICTs and Constitution-Building Tech Fair for technology entrepreneurs to present services, platforms and products that could be used in constitution-building processes, and exchange experiences and ideas with leading constitutional experts and leaders of recent constitutional transitions. This event was hosted by the National Constitutional Center, in Philadelphia, USA, and curated by the ICT4Peace Foundation.