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Thousands of Californians Are Now Using New Mobile Technology to Advise State Leaders

Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom Invites CRC Participants to UC Berkeley for March 20 Public Forum

BERKELEY, CA--(Marketwired - March 06, 2014) - Since the "California Report Card" platform launched in early February, over 6,000 people from almost every county in the state have assigned over 20,000 grades to the State of California. This feedback is being closely watched by Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom, who developed the platform with the CITRIS Data and Democracy Initiative at UC Berkeley. The project is exploring how technology can streamline and structure communication between constituents and elected officials.

Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom: "The California Report Card is a new way for me to keep an ear to the ground. This new app/website makes it easy for Californians to assign grades suggest pressing issues that merit our attention. In the first few weeks, participants conveyed that they approve of our rollout of Obamacare but are very concerned about the future of California schools and universities. I'm also gaining insights on issues ranging from speed limits to fracking to disaster preparedness."

"This platform allows us to have our voices heard. The ability to review and grade what others suggest is important. It enables us and elected officials to hear directly how Californians feel." -- Matt Harris, truck driver, Ione, CA

"This is the first system that lets us directly express our feelings to government leaders. I also really enjoy reading and grading the suggestions from other participants." -- Patricia Ellis Pasko, senior caregiver, Apple Valley, CA

"Everyone knows that report cards can motivate learning by providing quantitative feedback on strengths and weaknesses. Similarly, the California Report Card has potential to motivate Californians and their leaders to learn from each other about timely issues. As researchers, the patterns of participation and how they vary over time and across geography help us learn how to design future platforms." -- Prof. Ken Goldberg, UC Berkeley.

The project team welcomes anyone over 18 in California to participate. It takes only two minutes and works on all platforms including iPhone, Android and desktop: http://californiareportcard.org/mobile.

Newsom and Goldberg will host a public forum at UC Berkeley on 20 March 2014 to open conversation about the data and lessons learned. To register free of charge, go to: http://j.mp/CRC-20-March-Event.

The CRC is led by Ken Goldberg, craigslist Distinguished Professor of New Media Professor, IEOR and EECS, College of Engineering Dept. of Art Practice and School of Information, UC Berkeley 415-722-5649 goldberg@berkeley.edu. For details on the issues being graded, statistical significance, related projects, FAQ, contact info and more please visit the project website: http://californiareportcard.org/.

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