Lifting the curtain even higher

Here at OpenPlans we’re trying to change how cities are planned and managed. We’re motivated by ideas of fairer, more sustainable, lively places to live and work. We spend a lot of time thinking about how individuals alone and together can be more effective at starting and sustaining local projects, and how cities can inform and engage citizens in planning as policy and on-the-ground change.

Our approach to the challenges of building better cities is to create effective software tools. And since all our projects are open source, you can get a good idea of what we’re working on from our GitHub activity (there are a few private repos for client-specific customizations, but the rest is visible). That shows what we’re actively developing, and we strongly invite you to get involved in shaping the trajectory of those active projects.

But from GitHub, you can’t get a good handle on what we’re thinking about – what’s next, what bright (and dumb) ideas we’re chewing over during our lunchtime chats or whiteboard sessions.

Over the next few months, we’re going to share more of our internal processes, especially ideas we’re exploring for new tools. No big promises, but expect to see a few more posts here on the blog with sticky notes and other takeaways from our lunchtime chats and whiteboard sessions. We don’t make any claims of originality or finesse for these ideas – we’re sharing to start conversations, not to offer definitive last words.

We’ll start with some thinking we’ve been doing around tools for better-informed community groups,  which we learned about through a series of interviews with successful groups during the fall.

As always, looking forward to engaging in discussions and hearing your feedback.