Systems Evolution: A Gigamap by Van Alstyne, et al.

What is the central challenge facing government institutions and societies in coming decades? We define this challenge as Digital Era Governance, where information knows few boundaries, power is dispersed, and authority and accountability need to be re-conceived. The accompanying information graphic map is a work in progress, a visualization serving to elicit and represent perspectives, insights, issues, patterns of change, shifting values and norms associated with this transformation. 

Canadian Governance in the Digital Era: A Synthesis Map

A recent synthesis map was created by an sLab team for the SSHRC-sponsored Canadian Governance in the Digital Era, with the resulting map published in the March 2015 issue of Canadian Government Executive. The map draws on both foresight and system thinking models within a horizon scan of trends, values and weak signals for future innovation patterns:

How Might Canadian Governance Be Transformed in the Digital Era? (cc 2015) Kelly Kornet, Goran Matic, Peter Scott, Jill Sharrock, Stuart Candy, Peter Jones, Patricia Kambitsch, Greg Van Alstyne.

Led by a team from OCAD University’s Strategic Innovation Lab (sLab), as part of an initiative of the Digital Governance Partnership, this work was co-created as a synthesis map or gigamap. Gigamapping is defined (Sevaldson, 2011) as “super extensive mapping across multiple layers and scales, investigating relations between seemingly separated categories and so implementing boundary critique to the conception and framing of systems.”

In an article for Canadian Government Executive, Vol. 21 Issue 3, Greg Van Alstyne outlines the gigimap developed for the SSHRC-funded project, Digital Era Governance.