2014 Special Recognition: A Social Media Platform Connecting Elected Leaders and Their Constituents

In a world where communication increasingly occurs between screens, interactions between government leaders and their constituents has lagged behind. Existing social media websites do very little to enhance the quality of communication between leaders and their constituents; Facebook and Twitter are not capable of useful data collection while LinkedIn does not provide an outlet for conversation or the exchange of ideas. Lacking an online platform designed to address the nuances of the leader-citizen relationship, civic engagement is at an all-time low.

Powerline, a mobile app and web platform, streamlines and simplifies communication between leaders and citizens. The aim of the product is three-fold: to increase citizen participation in government, to facilitate grassroots movements, and to keep governments accountable. By integrating capabilities for polling, petitions, discussion boards, alerts, messaging, events, and payments, Powerline provides a two-way communication channel for leaders and their constituents. The platform fosters strong relationships, trust for good governance, easy elections and an overall increase in visibility—all from the convenience of a computer or mobile phone. By utilizing a mobile platform, Powerline empowers citizens to participate in polls and petitions on-the-go and at their leisure, which will likely increase overall response numbers and improve feedback.

Understanding the variety of possible applications, 100% of individuals involved in Beta Tests agreed that Powerline has “tremendous potential to help leaders and citizens interact like never before”.

At its core, the platform helps citizens better understand and interact with their leaders, ultimately dissolving the barriers between government and civil society. By linking constituents with their leaders, Powerline’s civic engagement platform serves to empower all parties involved. Open communication allows for leaders to be more in touch with the needs and desires of their constituents, which means better government. Powerline seeks to foster that connection and bring government and constituent into the 21st century.

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