Innovation Can Fix Government, Sure. Either That or Break It

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[Commentary] President Barack Obama more than any other president sought to apply Silicon Valley’s disruptive methods to government in an effort to make it work better for the people it’s supposed to serve. The White House has tapped President Donald Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner to lead the newly christened White House Office of American Innovation, which will reportedly operate like an in-house management consultancy, bringing fresh business ideas to government. Destructive innovation can work well for a company like, say, Uber, which is accountable only to its customers. But government doesn’t have customers. It has citizens for whom the government theoretically works. In practice that means policymakers can’t cavalierly destroy something to build it anew. A functional democracy doesn’t pick winners and losers. It exists to serve everyone. Instead of winner-take-all disruption, Kushner and his team of tech A-listers should tackle broader issues of efficiency and collaboration, which can be solved with better technology or processes—things that add value without taking any away from somewhere else.


Innovation Can Fix Government, Sure. Either That or Break It