Leveraging the Community
New York Tech Meetup emerged in the early 2000s as a formative organization in the city’s innovation ecosystem. Every month, hundreds of mostly young people and a few potential investors come to see computer coders and startup founders “demo” new apps and platforms they have created. In the 2010s, the tech meetup was joined by other organizations that also claimed to mobilize and speak for New York’s tech “community,” notably, the nonprofit organization Civic Hall, specializing in “civic tech,” and Tech:NYC, a nonprofit industry association. The chapter uses ethnographic observations and interviews with leaders of these organizations to document their efforts to “leverage” the membership for a role in tech policymaking in the city.
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