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Demoperate: An Online Social Platform for Citizen Engagement

The 10th annual GPPN Conference, hosted by the Sciences Po School of Public Affairs, featured students' solution oriented ideas and prototypes to address public policy challenges identified by the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). To participate, each GPPN member school carefully selected up to five student teams to present their projects and compete for the GPPN prize. The result: 32 teams from around the world met in Paris to showcase their ideas on how to solve some of the most pressing global challenges of today.


Demoperate is an online social platform for citizens to collaborate, network, and engage with one another to showcase and rate community projects that require public funding. This platform can be used to inform, advise and lobby public office holders to act on evidence-based project proposals with direct public input. When one voice is not enough to convince decision makers to act on the public interest, Demoperate provides citizens a community to garner support from neighbors, friends, and community members in an open and transparent environment that can signal the real needs of the community. This innovative approach of e-participation and e-collaboration will also offer governments a platform to announce and showcase upcoming publicly-funded community projects such as park renovations and public facility upgrades and receive constructive feedback from community members throughout the projects’ planning, operation, and completion stages. Instead of a one-dimensional value indicator such as a “like” or “+1” signatures on an e-petition, Demoperate will help governments crowd-source public input to refine and improve upon existing ideas. Demoperate seeks to become the leader in people-centric project-based e-collaboration that helps public office holders become more accountable to people’s needs.

Meet the team

Andy Chen Wang (project lead) is a politician with over six years of public service in Canadian politics on Parliament Hill as an assistant to the Minister for Democratic Reform. In 2015, Andy was nominated as the first Chinese-Canadian candidate for Member of Parliament in the capital region of Ottawa, Canada. Most recently he completed an internship with UNFPA’s Humanitarian and Fragile Context Branch with a focus on strategic planning and program evaluation for emergency responsiveness and resource deployment. Andy holds a BA from McGill University in Economics and Political Science and he is currently pursuing his MPA’18 at Columbia SIPA.

Shreemathi Tumkur (public relations) is a social entrepreneur with a Bachelors in Engineering from VTU in Bangalore, India. She is the co-founder of Videos for Knowledge, a social impact program that helps deliver digital content to low-income schools children in India. She has also worked for two years for Teach India with a focus on helping under-privileged schools. Most recently she was the Senior Associate for the Education Alliance and engaged with municipal governments to pass a PPP model to improve the quality of public education system in India. She is currently pursuing her MPA’18 at Columbia SIPA.

Srujan Routhu (technology) is an innovative programmer with a Bachelors in Engineering from IIT Bombay in Mumbai, India. He has a specialization in Data Science from Johns Hopkins University via Coursera. In 2015, he was the technology lead for Laughter Guru Ventures, an online learning platform in India. Currently he is working as a Research and Development Associate for EdLab at Teachers College at Columbia University. He is pursuing his MPA’18 at Columbia SIPA with a concentration in Economic and Political Development.

Two of their team members were not able to attend the conference, they are as follows: Andrea Venzon (finance) is a business professional with management consulting experience at McKinsey and he specializes in public sector projects in Italy. Moritz Wussow (marketing) is a passionate entrepreneur with startup and VC experience from Germany.

Interested in learning more about the GPPN programs and degrees? Find out here!


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