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City of Seattle
Ed Murray, Mayor
NEWS ADVISORY
SUBJECT: Seattle's web site named best in country
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
9/1/2011  4:00:00 PM
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT:
Vinh Tang, (206)684-8804
Dana Robinson Slote  (206) 615-0061


Seattle's web site named best in country
Data.Seattle.Gov wins award for leading open data effort

SEATTLE - Mayor Mike McGinn announced today that Seattle.Gov has been named the country's best city web portal for an unprecedented third time. The award for Best of the Web in the city category comes from the Center for Digital Government.

Data.Seattle.Gov was also named a Digital Government Achievement winner in the Government-to-citizen category. Data.Seattle.Gov increases access to datasets generated by various departments of Seattle city government, including building permits, crime statistics, and Neighborhood Matching Fund grants.

"A core value of my administration is open and effective government," said Mayor Mike McGinn. "And we are supporting that value in many ways, including town halls, public performance measurements for city departments, providing online data, and providing user friendly services to all our users on our city website. I congratulate our Department of Information Technology on receiving this award for best city web portal in America."

City Councilmember Bruce Harrell, who chairs the Energy, Technology and Civil Rights Committee, said, "In 2009, our Committee announced initiatives designed to empower the public and enhance transparency. We identified the need to migrate our city system to one that releases city data in an open format that is more readable and favorable to programming. We are very pleased to see the results and we will continue this commitment in 2012."

In making the award, evaluators called out Seattle's use of blogging and social media.

"CityLink blogs not only enable transparency, but this content is also pushed to RSS feeds and widgets so content is fresh," one judge said. "Many sites have blogs, but they don't allow public comments," added a judge. "This defeats the purpose of a blog. Seattle does it right."

"The goal of every government website is to provide online services and information to constituents," said Cathilea Robinett, executive director of the Center for Digital Government. "However, this year's winners have taken the power of the Web to the next level - combining clear communication, design aesthetic and easy navigation."

In its 16th year, Best of the Web (BOW) recognizes outstanding government portals and websites based on innovation, functionality and efficiency. The Digital Government Achievement Awards (DGAA) highlight outstanding agency and department websites and applications. The Center for Digital Government is a national research and advisory institute on information technology policies and best practices in state and local government. The Center is a division of e.Republic, a national publishing, event and research company focused on smart media for public sector innovation.

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