Here’s where we are so far:
Projects all over the world are using mySociety’s tools to run their websites
mySociety’s civic software is free and open source.
It’s used by organisations in many different countries.
But sometimes, those organisations need a little support.
That’s where we can help.
- Advice on getting started
- Documentation and tech support
- Guidance on funding and web hosting
- Welcome to a global community
And for non-commercial projects, our support is completely free.
Explore projects running on our code
Why partner with mySociety?
If you’re thinking of deploying mySociety’s open source code, then it makes sense to get a little help from us.
As you’d expect, we know our own code better than anyone, and we can often save you a lot of frustration by answering your questions, pointing out pitfalls, or even, in some cases, deploying your site for you.
Right now, we are not funding new projects ourselves — but we are happy to explore partnership with you, if you will join us in bidding for grants. Joint grant bidding will give you a head start, since we can call on experience and statistics from previous partnerships to provide the evidence that such projects have real impacts.
Once the funding has been secured, we’ll have the time and resources to dedicate to making your project a success.
What we can offer you
Here’s the path we’d take to help you get your project underway:
A joint funding bid
We’ll work with you to identify, plan and apply to suitable funding organisations. Grant applications can be a complex business, but we have some experience in optimising for success.
We’ll talk through the planned project with you, make sure all the details are in place, and help to gather any supporting material that may be required. mySociety can provide relevant sections of your own submission, or even make the whole application if that is appropriate.
Help with one of these mySociety codebases
We will currently consider joint funding bids with projects wishing to use one of these tools:
Funding bid, technical help, developer time and hosting
Funding bid and technical help
Once the project is funded:
As much technical help as you need
You don’t need to have coding skills to run a mySociety project – but if you have, that’s fine too. You might only need us to show you the codebase and documentation, or you might need us to hold your hand a bit more. Let’s talk and find out how we can help.
Some developer time
(Not currently applicable for FixMyStreet projects)
We allocate a set number of development days for each partner before and after launch. During that time we’ll be working only on getting your project up and running. After that period, requests for new features are considered in the context of how much value they will give across all users of the code, internationally.
Hosting, if you need it
Many of our partners host their own sites, but in some circumstances we can host your new site while you get up and running. Generally, we sign up for six months’ hosting (including development time); at the end of this period, we will review the agreement together.
Access to our specialist skills
We can help you with any or all of the following: project management, Adwords, marketing, user testing, research, analysis of your data, design.
A helpful, friendly community
We have partners all over the world, and we share experience and advice via events, online forums, research, documentation and community feedback.
What makes a good partnership?
We welcome new partners who want to deploy our code in their own country — but a mySociety partnership isn’t right for everyone.
Take a look at the following questions. If you can answer ‘yes’ to most or all of them, partnership is much more likely to be a good fit.
- Are you willing to apply for joint funding with us? Joint funding is a win-win situation: both sides benefit. We can help you locate and apply for the right kind of grants.
- Is there a real user need for your project, and can you demonstrate it? Show us who will use your site, and how well you understand them.
- Will you put users at the heart of your project? We want to make sure that any project we support will do good for its users — so we always begin with a user-centred design exercise.
- Do you understand the commitments involved in running a Civic Tech project? Running a site involves ongoing duties in user support, maintenance, and marketing, for the lifetime of the project. You can’t just launch it and leave it.
- Has your project or organisation been running for a while? It’s not always a problem if you’re brand new, but it helps if we can see some proof that you are sustainable.
- Is there more than one person working on your project? Running any of our codebases is a hard job for someone working alone. You’ll have a better chance of success if you have others to help you with some of the many tasks involved.
If you can answer ‘yes’ to at least the first 4 questions, then please do get in touch for a chat.
Note: Sadly, we are not able to work with everyone who contacts us. Due to our own limited resources, we sometimes have to make hard choices about the projects we can commit to.
You can maximise your chance of a positive outcome by providing information in your email that shows your planned project will be useful, viable, and resourced for the long term.
We’ll let you know whether or not we would like to explore your project further.
If so, we will want to talk to you and get some more details, so we’ll arrange to call you via Skype or Google Hangout.
Our international work is supported by