As part of working with the City of San Diego to develop an Open Data Policy, I and others have proposed that the city create a position for a Chief Innovation Officer, a person dedicated to identifying and developing new ways for the City to accomplish it’s job. To get a better idea of what a Chief Innovation Officer would do, see the job description for the position from the city of Austin. It’s by far the most polished job description I’ve ever seen, and demonstrates how significant the role will be to Austin’s future.
It is important to note that this is not a technical position; the most specific skill requirement is ‘people skills.’ Innovation involves technical problem solving, but the most important skill is linking people who have problems with the people who can solve them, and ensuring the two are speaking the same language.
If you are interested in the position, you’re too late. Austin hired Kerry O’Connor, previously a program director for the State Department.