It’s Go Time for the Presidential Innovation Fellows

Excitement is building as we prepare for Thursday’s launch of the Presidential Innovation Fellows program. This new initiative is bringing in top innovators from outside government to work with top innovators inside government to create real and substantial changes that will in a very short time frame benefit the American people, save taxpayers money, and help create new jobs.

After we announced our plans to create the Presidential Innovation Fellows program at TechCrunch Disrupt in New York City on May 23, nearly 700 of you applied for Fellowship spots, offering to drop everything you were doing and come serve your country.

On Thursday, August 23, we will introduce the inaugural Fellows at a White House launch event, which will be streamed live on at 10am EDT. And you can follow along on Twitter with the hashtag#innovategov. Joining me at the event will be a number of champions of innovation in government, including Acting Director of the Office of Management and Budget Jeff Zients, Director of the U.S. Office of Personnel Management John Berry, and U.S. Chief Information Officer Steve VanRoekel.

The five game-changing projects:

- MyGov (@ProjectMyGov) will create a rapid prototype of a streamlined online system that citizens will be able to use to easily access the information and services that are right for them from across the federal government.

- Open Data Initiatives (@ProjectOpenData) will accelerate and expand our efforts to make government data more publicly accessible in “computer-readable” form and spur the use of those data by entrepreneurs as fuel for the creation of new products, services, and jobs.

- The 20% Initiative (@ProjectTwenty) will work to transition “the last mile” of international development assistance payments from cash to electronic methods – lowering administrative costs, promoting financial inclusion, and reducing theft, fraud, and violence.

- RFP-EZ (@ProjectRFPEZ) will develop a new process and online marketplace that will make it vastly easier for the government and small high-growth tech startups to do business with each other, effectively opening up the government market to these startups as never before and enabling the government to buy better, lower-cost tech solutions from the full range of American businesses.

- Blue Button for America (@ProjectBlueBtn) will spread the ability for millions of Americans to easily and securely download their own health information electronically, empowering them to take that information with them should they change insurer or provider and share it with their loved ones or doctors if they choose, all while fueling the emergence of time-saving, money-saving, and even life-saving products and the businesses and jobs that those products will support.

So tune in on Thursday!  And if you want to learn more, follow the progress of these projects, and help contribute to their success, sign up here.

Following the live event Thursday morning, I’ll be hosting a special session of White House Office Hours on Twitter at 5pm EDT to discuss the launch of the Presidential Innovation Fellows and the projects they will be pursuing.

Here’s how it works:

- Ask your questions now and during the live event on Twitter with the hashtag#WHChat

- Follow the Q&A live through the @WHLive and @WhiteHouseOSTP Twitter accounts

- If you miss the live session, the full session will be posted on and

Todd Park is the US Chief Technology Officer