Nemani came into L.A.’s city hall with a resume that includes both Code for America and Google. Mayor Eric Garcetti hired him last August in an effort to make good on a campaign promise to make the city’s government more data-driven, open and innovative. Nemani has spent the last six months working on Data.LACity.org, a massive experiment in digital transparency and he, at least, understands what’s unique about Govtech’s startups.
“Many of the technologies that are in place were designed years ago in the first wave of digital technology,” he says, referring to the public sector infrastructure he’s seen. Historically, it was customized and unique only to itself, he says — the logical conclusion of an RFP bid, where a policymaker put out the request and a tech contractor answered it.