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Mergel Wins PA TIMES Best Article Award

Article on Social Media and Gov 2.0 Chosen as Best of 2010

Washington, DC–The PA TIMES is pleased to announce that the Summer Issue 2010 article “Gov 2.0 Revisited: Social Media Strategies in the Public Sector” by Ines Mergel, has been selected as the winner of its 2010 H. George Frederickson PA TIMES Best Article Award. Mergel is an assistant professor of public administration in the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, School of Information Studies at Syracuse University.

Comments from members of the selection committee included their judgment that the article was relevant to both academic and practitioner audiences, with directly actionable advice for public managers; clearly written; and provided cutting-edge information.

When informed of her win, Mergel had this to say, “I am very honored to accept the PA TIMES Best Article Award for 2010, and would like to thank the award committee for their hard work in reviewing what were undoubtedly a large group of high quality submissions.

“Government 2.0 is not only a hot topic at the moment, it is an important one. I believe that the use of social media applications is at a tipping point, moving from early innovators toward broader acceptance among government professionals. These technologies often challenge the way that public employees conduct their work, but as the use of Government 2.0 grows we will observe more changes in the way information is organized and distributed, as well as in the way information is co-created by citizens and absorbed by government.

“In this early stage of Government 2.0, the use of social media in the public sector is often labeled as the ‘Wild West of e-Government.’ However, we are beginning to move into a convergence phase–where the reality of government operations merges with the new reality of social networking services: both will have to adapt to these new challenges. What is missing is clear guidance on best practices and acceptable strategies for effectively using social media applications to support the missions and practices of government organizations. The interviews I conducted with current social media directors for this PA TIMES article highlight not only challenges and hurdles, but also the positive impacts social media can have in the public sector. Government is already part of the public conversations that are happening on social networking sites; therefore, public managers need to understand where and how these conversations evolve–and become a part of them. I believe that both researchers and government practitioners have a lot of interesting ground to cover in the next few years. And, I for one, am excited to be a part of that. Thank you again for recognizing the importance of this fascinating and growing area of public administration practice and research.”

To read Mergel’s award winning article, click on the link in the Related Articles box at the end of this article.

Created in 2002, the PA TIMES Best Article Award is presented annually. In 2009, the award was renamed the H. George Frederickson PA TIMES Best Article Award, to honor former ASPA president and PA TIMES founding father H. George Frederickson.

The award will be presented during the Awards Ceremony at ASPA’s Annual Conference, March 11-15, in Baltimore, MD.

Contact Christine Jewett McCrehin at [email protected] for more information on publishing with PA TIMES print or online.

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