Municipal Management Portal

The Municipal Management Portal is an online platform for local government policy practitioners to learn and share expertise and build collaborative networks across Argentina and internationally. The Portal is innovative not only through new applications of technology but also because it reflects a new conceptual understanding of Argentinian local government as open, professionalised and dynamic.

Innovation Summary

Innovation Overview

Argentinian local government is relatively fragmented, stratified and unstructured in comparison with European or North American correlates. As a result, local government practitioners across Argentina are less able to work collaboratively, share resources and skills or develop their respective local government organisations.

It is in this context that the Local Innovation Network’s (Red de Innovación Local / RIL) has developed the Municipal Management Portal (Portal de Gestión Municipal). The Portal is a digital platform designed to encourage, facilitate and shape the development of Argentinian local government through collaboration and shared learning of policy methodologies.

The Municipal Management Portal operates through five functions. Firstly, ‘connect me’ (conectarme), allows practitioners to create professional links between their different local government areas. ‘Share’ (intercambiar) allows practitioners to participate in engagement activities in order to learn, ask questions and discuss their experiences with colleagues from different localities. ‘Inspire me’ (inspirarme) features a world map filled with examples of innovative local government policy solutions to myriad problems across the globe. The purpose of this is to illustrate the breadth of activity, capacity and innovation at the local government level, globally. ‘Teach me’ (capacitarme) allows practitioners to access a bank of policy documents and online learning materials related to their area of work or interest in order to support their development and communicate RIL’s vision for local government organisation. Finally, through ‘evaluate me’ (evaluarme) RIL can collect data on the progress of local governments through questionnaires, self-administered by local government practitioners, that in turn can measure the degree of development of their own strategies. In this way, the Portal can identify strengths and opportunities for policy development in particular local government areas and thereby justify and strengthen RIL’s facilitation work with the locality in question.

The portal also provides access to a system for registering and monitoring social assistance given out in the city, solving a pain point identified throughout many management teams in the country. This "social assistance management dashboard" is the first of many planned additions to this powerful tool. The "environmental management dashboard" and "economic development dashboard" are both in a development phase.

These different functions reflect the different potential applications of the Portal by various actors. Principally, local government practitioners can understand the demands and dimensions of their work more effectively. They can also communicate with colleagues from different localities informally through structured engagement events or make specific contact with practitioners related to a particular policy initiative. These aspects reflect RIL’s human-centred approach to public sector innovation and local government development. The Portal emphasises the need for professional contact and mutual engagement across different policy areas between local government areas such that practitioners can capitalise upon shared expertise, work collaboratively and inspire one another. This is not limited only to Argentina or South America. The Portal’s international reach already covers every continent and improving the quality and quantity of inspirational international examples of policy innovations is a key goal for the development of the Portal in future.

The breadth of the Portal’s functions indicate its ability to provides an important tool for RIL to increase their impact upon the speed and direction of local government development in Argentina. In particular, the Portal invites local government practitioners not only to be policy professionals but also policy entrepreneurs, through international examples of policy innovations and detailed best practices approaches to various policy domains. Practitioners are supported in this through the Portal’s available resources and RIL’s work more widely, which is integrated into the Portal through the ‘evaluate me’ (evaluarme) section. This illustrates how the Portal can function as a social network, resource bank and data collection service in order to make RIL’s work more effective, support the development of local governments and local government practitioners and communicate parallel development internationally. In this way, the Portal contributes to cultural change in the Argentinian policy sector – towards more professionalised and structured local government.

Innovation Description

Innovation Development

Innovation Reflections

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Year: 2019
Level of government: Local government

Status:

  • Implementation - making the innovation happen

Innovation provided by:

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