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Steven VanRoekel: Gov’t Recruits Private Sector Talent for White House Innovation Program

Steven VanRoekel
Steven VanRoekel

The White House has invited technologists to work on crowdsourcing, veteran digital services and open data projects through an innovation fellows program, Nextgov reported Thursday.

Joseph Marks writes the Office of Science and Technology Policy issued a notice Thursday seeking a third batch of non-government professionals for the six-month Presidential Innovation Fellows program.

Steven VanRoekel, federal chief information officer, told the publication that the program will be used as a model for attracting private sector talent into government in the future.

Five crowdsourcing teams will work to help the State Department share geographic data with OpenStreetMap for development and humanitarian programs and develop tools for the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to identify prior inventions before approving patent applications, according to the report.

Marks writes the fellows will also be tasked with aiding NASA’s Grand Asteroid Challenge, converting National Archives documents into machine-readable formats and helping the Energy Department detect power disruptions.

The open data teams will work to help release data from eight federal agencies including the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, NASA, the Internal Revenue Service and Veterans Affairs Department, Nextgov reports.

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