Sebastian W. James | The Cook County Budget Site: Using digital communications to make government more transparent.
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The Cook County Budget Site

From 3 budget cycles, I collaborated with the Office of the President, and the Bureau of Finance to create a custom preliminary budget website.


The problem we were trying to solve was transparency.  Prior to our administration, the County’s budget process was quite opaque.  There was no easy way for the average person to understand the process, the numbers and the issues driving revenues and expenditures.


It fell upon me to start a conversation on how to break the black glass and let the sunshine of government transparency cover this process.  We came up with a way to break the budget down in an easy-to-understand way.  I came up with ways that the public could ask questions and provide input.  We packaged this as a website, social media campaign and live-streaming event.


Here’s a link to an archived version of the 2012 version.  As of the date of the post, 80% of the site’s links and images worked properly.



January 28, 2016