WASHINGTON, DC –The Sunlight Labs, Sunlight Foundation’s open source development team, announced Design for America, an innovative contest that challenges artists and designers to use government data in exciting new ways. Contest winners will be announced on May 27 at a reception at the Gov 2.0 Expo, sponsored by O’Reilly Media and TechWeb. Competitors will compete for 1st place prizes of $5,000 each in several categories. Sponsors include The Adobe Corporation, Google, O’Reilly, TechWeb and the Gov2.0 expo.
The competition will focus on art and visualizations in three general categories: data visualization, process transparency and redesigning government. The data visualization category will focus on projects designed to distill complex datasets into easily understandable graphics, pictures or videos. Judges in this category include Andrew Vande Moere of Infosthetics, Nathan Yso of Flowingdata, Charles Blow of The New York Times and Nick Felton of Feltron. Competitors can create entries using Sunlight community data, data from the federal budget, USASpending.gov or Recovery.gov.
“The goal is to present government data, procedures and even government forms in easy to understand, meaningful and creative ways,” said Clay Johnson, director of the Sunlight Labs. “This competition will show that when government data is released to everyone, online, that anyone can analyze and contextualize the information in ways that are truly meaningful. Think better, easier ways to use tax forms, an art instillation about how the House budget process works or a visualization that clearly explains to people the intersection of money and power.”
The Process Transparency category will focus on showing citizens how the processes of our government work. Competitors will visualize how a bill becomes a law, congressional rules and floor procedures. Competitors in this category will be judged by Lisa Strausfeld, a designer and technologist at Pentagram, John Wonderlich and Daniel Schuman of the Sunlight Foundation.
In the Redesigning the Government category, competitors will redesign government forms and Web sites so that they become easier to use and provide more useful information to citizens trying to access them. Judges will include Sunlight Labs Designer Ali Felski and others.
Artists and designers have until May 17 to submit their projects.
The Sunlight Foundation is a non-partisan, non-profit that uses cutting-edge technology and ideas to make government transparent and accountable. Visit SunlightFoundation.com to learn more about Sunlight’s projects, including Transparency Corps and Party Time.