Digital government academic society forming

SEATTLE - Organizers of the digital government research and development conference are planning to start their own independent society.

The fifth annual conference, underway in Seattle, provides a meeting ground for participants in the National Science Foundation's Digital Government Research Program to share ideas and present research.

A community of about 100 individuals has sprung up around NSF's program area since the start of the program, conference finance co-chair Yigal Arens said.

Although NSF has traditionally funded the conference to help facilitate the community, the organizers wish to make the group self-sufficient, Arens said.

The yet-unnamed society, to be registered as a not-for-profit-entity, will be similar to other scientific societies. It will charge dues, which will go toward paying for the yearly conference, supporting the Web site and perhaps a newsletter or a professional magazine.

Arens sees the American Association of Artificial Intelligence as a model for how the group may be organized.

Arens solicited volunteers at the conference to help develop the constitution and establish governance. For information on joining, e-mail Arens at arens@isi.edu or join the group's email newsletter list.

Founded in 1999, NSF's Digital Government Research Program funds projects that show how to use cutting-edge computer science research within government.

About the Author

Joab Jackson is the senior technology editor for Government Computer News.

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