The Center for Digital Government Charter

The advancement and diffusion of knowledge is the only guardian of true liberty. - James Madison

The only source of knowledge is experience. - Albert Einstein

Our Mission

The Center for Digital Government is a national research and advisory institute focused on identifying and sharing exemplary information technology policies and best practices in state and local government. Through diverse and dynamic programs and services, the Center provides public and private sector leaders with decision support, information, and opportunities to help them improve public service by effectively turning experience into knowledge and incorporating new technologies into public services.

Our Activities

Center activities are focused on supporting the fundamentals of good government: financial stewardship, responsive service, transparency, accountability, participation and trust. 

Building Communities of Interest - The Digital States Performance Institute, focused on state government, and Digital Communities, focused on local government, are not places but communities of interest focused on modernizing and improving government service.  By connecting and encouraging information technology executives and practitioners the Center seeks to foster collaboration and accelerate the implementation of proven success.  

Recognizing and Sharing of Best Practices - Regularly administered national surveys and digital government achievement and awards programs provide a continuous and comprehensive mechanism for identifying and sharing state and local government information technology benchmarks and activities worthy of emulation.    

Thought Leadership and Research - Working in collaboration with government and industry partners, the Center regularly produces white papers, special reports and advisory documents that help to establish a context and framework for the application of technology in support of public service.  

Professional Development - By convening public and private sector leaders through national summits, regional events, working group and task force meetings, the Center provides an opportunity for peer-to-peer collaboration and information and analysis that supports better decision making and that helps improve outcomes. A significant theme cross-cutting these events is linking leaders from government and industry to share ideas, build mutual understanding and discover ways to work together to improve public service delivery.

Our Core Beliefs

The Center for Digital Government is non-partisan and non-ideological. Our work is shaped and strengthened by certain principles. We believe:

  1. Government work is honorable and the institutions of government and those who work in them should be respected.
  2. Narrowing the gap between the people in charge in our country and the great mass of ordinary people is of paramount importance.
  3. Government exists to produce positive outcomes in the community and those outcomes are “co-produced” by government and citizens working together.
  4. Modern digital technology that supports information sharing, communication, collaboration, and learning are central to daily living and to the function of government.
  5. Innovation and public service improvement are most likely to occur when government and industry work together.  

Our Timing

The Center for Digital Government was created in 1999 out of a recognition that the proliferation of personal computing had significant and far reaching implications for state and local government. Advances in technology began to draw computing out of the data center, away from mainframe computers and career technologists, placing it on desktops in the hands of all employees. Development of extensive and robust networks created new and valuable connections that began to diminish the influence of time and distance.  This began an era of fundamental rethinking of public service delivery.   The Center was at the forefront of exploring the implications and opportunities this created with elected and appointed officials and industry alike.    

In the 15 years since its inception, the Center has continued to encourage the application of information technology to state and local government processes and service delivery.  The proliferation of technology, its integration into the day to day lives and activities of the public, and development of capabilities almost unimaginable 15 years ago, have resulted in both great opportunity and high expectations for the future.   

The Center remains dedicated to working with government and industry to encourage and support adoption of proven strategies and approaches to meeting the needs of today while keeping an eye on the horizon in order to identify, define and help plan for the opportunities of tomorrow.