The steady advance of digital tech in information collection, storage, and analysis has given local communities and their governments powerful tools. How they are used, for good or ill, is a central question in government operations, its relation to the public it is supposed to serve, and how active and informed that public is as a democratic one. It’s easy to imagine a world of oppressive, opaque, and predatory private corporations, with governments as their enthusiastic servant or co-conspirator, preying on a clueless public usually willing to sacrifice privacy for conveniences. But it’s almost as easy to imagine these tools being used to responsibly improve the efficiency of democratic government’s operation and fidelity to the will of a better informed and secure public, with greater equality within it. ProGov21’s policy roadmap on Data & Technology is coming soon.