BC Identity Citizen Consultation Results!!!!

As many of you know I (along with many other industry leaders from different industry/civil society segments) was proactively invited to be part of the NSTIC process including submitting a response to the notice of inquiry about how the IDESG and Identity Ecosystem should be governed.

I advocated and continue to advocate that citizen involvement and broad engagement from a broad variety of citizen groups and perspectives would be essential for it to work. The process itself needed to have its own legitimacy even if “experts” would have come to “the same decisions” if citizens were and are not involved the broad rainbow that is America might not accept the results.

I have co-lead the Internet Identity Workshop since 2005 every 6 months in Mountain View, California at the Computer History Museum. It is an international event and folks from Canada working on similar challenges have been attending for several years this includes Aran Hamilton from the National oriented Digital ID and Authentication Council (DIAC) and several of the leaders of the British Columbia Citizen Services Card effort.

I worked with Aron Hamilton helping him put on the first Identity North Conference to bring key leaders together from a range of industries to build shared understanding about what identity is and how systems around the world are working along with exploring what to do in Canada.

CoverThe British Columbia Government (a province of Canada where I grew up) worked on a citizen services card for many years. They developed an amazing system that is triple blind. An article about the system was recently run in RE:ID. The system launched with 2 services – drivers license and health services card. The designers of the system knew it could be used for more then just these two services but they also knew that citizen input into those policy decisions was essential to build citizen confidence or trust in the system.  The other article in the RE:ID magazine was by me about the citizen engagement process they developed.

They developed to extensive system diagrams to help provide explanations to regular citizens about how it works. (My hope is that the IDESG and the NSTIC effort broadly can make diagrams this clear.)

 

The government created a citizen engagement plan with three parts:

The first was convening experts. They did this in relationship with Aron Hamilton and Mike Monteith from Identity North – I as the co-designer and primary facilitator of the first Identity North was brought into work on this. They had an extensive note taking team and the reported on all the sessions in a book of proceedings. They spell my name 3 different ways in the report.

The most important was a citizen panel that was randomly selected citizens to really deeply engage with citizens to determine key policy decisions moving forward. It also worked on helping the government understand how to explain key aspects of how the system actually works. Look in the RE:ID I wrote an article for RE:ID about the process you can see that here.
The results were not released when I wrote that. Now they are! yeah! The report is worth reading because it shows the regular citizens who are given the task of considering critical issues can come out with answers that make sense and help government work better.

 

 

They also did an online survey open for a month to any citizen of the province to give their opinion. That you can see here.

Together all of these results were woven together into a collective report.

 

Bonus material: This is a presentation that I just found covering many of the different Canadian province initiatives.

 

PS: I’m away in BC this coming week – sans computer.  I am at Hollyhock…the conference center where I am the poster child (yes literally). If you want to be in touch this week please connect with William Dyson my partner at The Leola Group.

Core Concepts in Identity

One of the reasons that digital identity can be such a challenging topic to address is that we all swim in the sea of identity every day.  We don’t think about what is really going in the transactions….and many different aspects of a transaction can all seem do be one thing.  The early Identity Gang conversations focused a lot on figuring out what some core words meant and developed first shared understanding and then shared language to talk about these concepts in the community.

I’m writing this post now for a few reasons.

There is finally a conversation about taxonomy with the IDESG – (Yes! after over a year of being in existence it is finally happening (I recommended in my NSTIC NOI Response  that it be one of the first things focused on)

Secondly I have been giving a 1/2 day and 1 day seminar about identity and personal data for several years now (You can hire me!).  Recently I gave this seminar in New Zealand to top enterprise and government leaders working on identity projects 3 times in one week.  We covered:

  • The Persona and Context in Life
  • The Spectrum of Identity
  • What is Trust?
  • A Field Guide to Internet Trust
  • What is Personal Data
  • Market Models for Personal Data
  • Government Initiatives Globally in eID & Personal Data

[Read more...]

Meta-Governance

This spring I attended the Executive Education program Leadership and Public Policy in the 21st century at the Harvard Kennedy school of government with fellow Young Global Leaders (part of the World Economic Forum).  A line of future inquiry that came to me by the end of that two weeks -

How do we design, create, get functioning and evolve governance systems?

The governance of governance systems = Meta-Goverancne. 

At the Kennedy program all they could talk about was “individual leadership” (with good advice from good teams of course) at the top of  Organizations.  They all waved their hands and said “Good luck young leaders, We know its more complicated now…and the problems are bigger then just organizational size but we don’t really know how what to tell you about how to interorgainzational collaborative problem solving and innovations…so “good luck”.

It was surreal because this inter-organizational, complex space is where I spend my work life helping design and facilitate unconferneces – it is in that complex inter organizational place.

I have this clear vision about how to bring my two main career bodies of knowledge together (digital identity + digital systems & design and facilitation of unconferneces using a range of participatory methods) along with a range of other fields/disciplines that I have tracked in the last 10 years.

Real Names vs Nyms at Quora & Unconferences

I am again in a #nymwar [wikipedia & Botgirl's Scoop.it] situation that I actually care about. I have been denied full participation in Quora for a long long time now because my last name was listed as IdentityWoman (ironically my answer to why having control over your identity and personal data online matters did go through but then was put into suspension when they insisted on changing my name to a WASPonym).

Now there is a thread all about an unconfernece for women of Quora and they have mentioned both Unconference.net my business and She’s Geeky that I founded in the threads. I for this one important conversation bow to the “feudal lord”  of Quora as their humble “content producing servent” share my so-called real name…and help them have a good unconference and raise the issues of real name requirements within the context of real human beings who engage with the site all the time and hopefully staff as well.  Until we have the freedom to choose our names for public interactions on the web – to define our own identities based on our context and how we wish to appear where – we do not live in a free society.

 

Before they “banned” me for having the wrong color skin name. I got to write an eloquent to this question (posted below since it isn’t on their site).

Why does owning one’s own online identity and personal data matter?

and was voted to the top (with 5 votes) by others…but now that answer isn’t there cause I didn’t use my real name.

So now you can’t see it…this is akin to not letting me sit somewhere in a public space because the color of my skin is the wrong one OR I happen to sit in a wheel chair to get around and there isn’t room in our restaurant and they are in violation of American’s with Disabilities Act.

The women of Quora are talking about organizing an unconfernece and found two of my organizations/sites and are enthusiastic about them. I am totally unable to talk to them about their ideas or my sites unless I pass their “real names” test….you know like a pole tax … that Bob and I talked about in our Cloud Identity Summit closing Keynote about Identification and Social Justice (slides and videos will be online soon).

My answer to:

Why does owning one’s own online identity and personal data matter?

We own our own bodies – we have freedom and autonomy to move around the physical world.  We have rights and freedoms; If our physical lives are terminated there are consequences.

In the digital world many people are not the primary “owner” of their own identity (in digital space the equivalent of a physical body is a persistent identifier like an e-mail address or a URL or phone number).  Most people’s identity on the web is “under” terms and conditions of a private company and they can terminate people’s accounts, their identities, without recourse.

Many companies with which people have their identities “under” choose to in exchange for providing identity provisioning services and things like e-mail. They also track and aggregate user’s activities on their services and across the web via cookies and other beacons.  This profile of activity has real value and is being used by the companies to profile them and then sell abstract versions of the profile information on ad exchanges.

Some have said we live in an age of digital feudalism, where we are serfs on the lords’ manors (the large web portals).

Having the freedom and autonomy to choose who we are online and how we express ourselves is important to ensuring a free society  with rights and liberty.

Adding some more: About one’s social graph… The links in your social graph in the current architecture of the web exist within particular contexts – you have friends in Facebook or Followers on Twitter or Professional Contacts on LinkedIN. Those links, those connections in a “social graph” are ulitmately owned by the company within which you made those links. If you choose to leave any one of those networks – all your links to those people are terminated.

This is an architecture of control. You are locked into those systems if you don’t want to loose the links to others in them. To own your own identity would be to have an identity that would give you the freedom to not loose the links to your contacts, they would be peer to peer autonomous of any particular service.

The next time there is a major social revolution like in Egypt governments are not going to try and turn of the internet or mobile phone system it is likely they will simply call facebook ans ask them to terminate the accounts of dissidents.

 

 

Recent Activity Pt 4: Europe Week 1

Week one in Europe was busy. The day I arrived Esther picked me up and we headed to Qiy’s offices where i got to run into John Harrison who I last saw a year ago at IIW Europe. He is organizing a consortium to go in for FP-7 money (80 million) put out for projects around Identity in the European Union.

Wednesday was Nov 9th Identity.Next convened by Robert was great bringing people together from across Europe. 1/2 the day was a regular conference and 1/2 the day was an UnConference that I helped facilitate.  I ran a session about personal data and we had a good conversation.  I also learned about a German effort that seemed promising – Pidder - their preso in The Hague

November 10th I headed to London for New Digital Economics EMEA along with Maarten from Qiy.  It was fantastic to be on stage with 5 different start-up projects all doing Personal Data along with one big one :)

It was clear that the energy in the whole space had shifted beyond the theoretical and the response from the audience was positive.  I shared the landscape map we have been working on to explain elements of the overall ecosystem.

Digital Death Day was November 11th in Amsterdam was small but really good with myself, Stacie and Tamara organizing.  We had a small group that included a Funeral Director a whole group form Ziggur. We were sponsored by the company formerly know as DataInherit – they changed their name to SecureSafe. Given that Amsterdam is closer then California to Switzerland we were hopping they would make it given their ongoing support…alas not this year.

One of the key things to come out of the event was an effort to unite the technology companies working on solutions in this area around work to put forward the idea of a special OAuth token for their kind of services perhaps also with a “Trust Framework” that could use the OIX infrastructure.

It as also inspiring to have  two two young developers attend.

  • Leif Ekas  travelled from Norway – I had met him this summer in Boston when he was attending summer school at BU and working on his startup around aspects of digital death.
  • Sebastian Hagens – Sebastix
It made me wish Markus had made it there from Vienna.
When I was at TEDx Brussels I was approached by another young developer Tim De Conick well more accurately visionary who got some amazing code written – WriteID.
Given the energy last summer at the Federated Social Web Summit and these new efforts that could all be connected together/interoperable. I think there is critical mass for a developer / hacker week for Personal Data in Europe this Spring Summer and I am keen to help organize it.