By Bret Piatt
May 1, 2018
This past Saturday, April 28, episode 83 of Cyber Talk Radio hit the air on 1200 WOAI and iHeartRadio streaming. I was joined by Jose de la Cruz, City of San Antonio Chief Innovation officer, and Joyce Deuley, Geekdom Program Manager, to discuss how CivTechSA is leading the way in civic engagement and tech.
This week, I was happy to get both Jose and Joyce together on the show to hear more about CivTechSA and how the City of San Antonio is working with the team at Geekdom on CivTechSA. What is CivTechSA? Geekdom and the City of San Antonio’s Office of Innovation have teamed up to create CivTechSA in November of 2017. The mission of this civic engagement program centers around the collaborative problem-solving of various city challenges as well as facilitating the growth of our local startup ecosystem. By working with a partners, sponsors, and organizations within the San Antonio community, CivTechSA will engage the city’s growing and diverse pool of tech and entrepreneurial talent. They have kicked off the first residency program which is a 16-week program where the City invites startups to solve civic challenges. A selection committee will choose three startups to embed inside of City Departments and collaborate closely with the City to build custom solutions for San Antonio. For example, one of the challenges is from the Human Services division of the city, where they are wanting to automate some processes. Other example challenges are with animal services and even a detailed airport map of the different terminals.
In the second half of the show, Jose tells a more about how San Antonio is thinking about innovation in a different way. One of the key factors that makes the city unique is the strong sense of community. Jose and his team in the Office of Innovation are working on making San Antonio a smart city bringing together different c-level executives from organizations such as San Antonio Water System, VIA Transit and CPS into a coalition. The coalition meets regularly to discuss how they can better collaborate on city efforts. Jose would like to mimic many of the successful smart city efforts done by the San Francisco, Austin and Dallas innovation programs. Jose also walks us through the idea of Innovation zones, which break up the city in different zones to test different innovation ideas before you take them city-wide. Keep an eye on the CivTechSA blog and social channels for updates on their efforts and the upcoming demo day. The first residency program ends at the end of July 2018.
To listen to the episode replay to learn more, gohere or watch below.**
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