The 21st Century Project

The 21st Century Project is a research and education program on community, policy and technology, affiliated with and located at the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin. Founded in 1991, the Project explores ways for citizens to be involved in policymaking involving technology, particularly in the fields of telecommunications, the Internet, digital media and other forms of digital communication. Past projects have included work on rural broadband in Texas, community networks, technology in international development, new digital tools for nonprofit organizations, e-government, and privacy and security. Much of the work of the Project is done by graduate students at the University of Texas at Austin, and the project is directed by Gary Chapman, a faculty member at the LBJ School.

Interactive Budget Project Interactive Federal Budget Project
Governments at all levels are faced with two intersecting challenges: fiscal dilemmas and greater demands for transparency. The Federal Transparency Act of 2006 introduced to the Web a searchable database of all federal government spending. In February 2008 the White House Office of Management and Budget put the White House budget for the federal government online for the first time. Now the task is to move toward an interactive budget that will allow citizens to track and monitor public sector budgets as they develop, to increase and enhance transparency, accountability, and citizen engagement. View and listen to a slide and audio presentation about the Interactive Federal Budget Project by clicking here.
Community Media & Policy
The media frames the news and therefore helps shape public opinion on important matters. How an outlet chooses to portray a policy subject, or not portray it at all, influences our understanding of social, cultural and political issues. The key to creating the best media that accurately reflects our world is through good media and communications policy. Because we are currently undergoing major technical changes in the media environment, community media is one issue that should be of particular interest for media policymakers right now. Read more...
e-Government & Citizen Participation
An interesting facet of the Internet has been its use by governments to improve democracy, transparency and citizen services. Without a doubt the Internet is changing the traditional styles of citizen participation and governments need to adapt their strategies and relations with theirs citizens. On the other hand, as governments introduce these technologies and tools, it is necessary to focus on building a strong sense of community among citizens instead of debating technical issues. That is, civic engagement is more of a cultural and political issue and although the Internet and new technologies can contribute, they should be seen only as means. In this page, you will find some related tools and case studies. Read more...

Disaster Informatics
Austin's experience dealing with evacuees from Hurricanes Katrina and Rita contributed to the development of a new field of activity: "disaster informatics," or the use of information technology to prepare for and cope with a disaster. This section discusses different projects, technologies and standards. We also include a list of resources such as other people involved in the field as well as a survey of literature and related centers and groups. Read more...
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LBJ School of Public Affairs

The LBJ School offers a master's degree program with a specialization in information, technology and innovation.

Click here for more information.