It is a trend to integrate modern technology into most aspects of our lives like fitness and fashion. However, for governance, it is a necessity. A tech-enhanced government has insurmountable potential to better the lives of the masses.
It is a utopian concept for most of us, having government assistance at the click of a button. In some parts of the world, meaningful development is actually that accessible. These innovations are made possible because of technology.
Citizens can play an active role in deciding important matters in their communities. All of this can be attributed to connectivity. Take a look at Comcast Xfinity if you want a reliable connectivity partner.
Benefits of Using Technology in Governance
The technological expansion of the public sector is inevitable. With the dynamic economic landscape, governments are trying to keep up with the demands of a growing population. By automating public service and development, the aim is to reach a higher level of citizen satisfaction. Technology benefits the government sector by:
- Reducing the cost of operations and making them efficient.
- Secure data storage, analytics, and sharing with full visibility ensures transparency and accountability
- Disaster and crisis management/assistance through tech-driven solutions.
- Competing with the private sector to meet citizen requirements
- Offering streamlined support instead of unorganized fire-fighting.
- Opening communication between citizens and government
- Digitizing processes that ensure seamless inter-departmental communication
- Building public trust with the government
- Giving voice and agency to the public
All of the above advantages and drivers have manifested themselves in various countries to improve the quality of life for the citizens and remove their pain points.
Let’s look at some case studies of the public sector benefiting from technological integration.
- National Identification
Asia houses about a quarter of the world’s population. Many countries in Asia are establishing digitized national identity programs. These initiatives have been instrumental in tax enforcement and compliance to keep track of citizens’ income taxes and GSTs. This makes it easier for citizens to file for returns.
By facilitating the taxation process and decreasing the public’s labor, the tax-paying base can be expanded. A great example of this is India’s Aadhaar Card system. This is closely followed by Pakistan’s NADRA National Identity system, Malaysia’s MyKad, and Indonesia’s e-KTP card.
- Participation in the National Budget
In the Kivu province of the Democratic Republic of Congo, you can obtain real-time information about the provincial government budgetary meetings. The citizens can weigh in with their opinions through “mSurvey” voting polls. This project a sense of accountability and ownership in the citizens, helping them take part in the financial decisions of their community.
- Blockchain Technology
Land registry authorities work on bribes for the most part in underdeveloped countries. We have observed the use of blockchain-based platforms in eradicating fraud. Such a platform is used in the Andhra Pradesh state of India, to make records encrypted, transparent, and hack-proof.
- Addressing Policy Matters
For most citizens all over the world, co-designing solutions to community issues in a Digital Caninet is a distant dream. Not in Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. The online program named “Governor Asks” allows citizens to identify their problems and suggest policy changes to address them. Citizens have submitted more than 60,000 proposals.
- Better provision of healthcare services.
Thailand is gearing up to become the healthcare center of Asia. In 2016, they established the Ministry of Digital Economy and Society with a master plan spanning over 20 years to be executed in four phases. Digital ID systems, Big Data, and Data Analytics Center.
The aim is to prepare the government for the use of artificial intelligence in combining the Thai public health system with Personal Health records. This will transfer most healthcare operations online. Smart Health ID numbers will make it possible to access healthcare services.
- Transport and urban management
Indonesia is a prime example of urban transport modernization with tech. Jakarta Transport Authority collaborated with several software and apps in order to determine the best routes, traffic density, and alternative ways, reducing travel time by 20% and the public users of the transit by 30%.
In addition to this, Jakarta is making great headway in areas of crime reporting, education placements, and decreasing response time using a consolidated platform “Citizen Relation Management”
- Improving Educational Experiences
A monitoring tool by the name of “CheckMySchool” pushes to improve developmental endeavors in schools. Locals are using this platform to make crowd-generated reports on the condition and quality of school facilities. Government authorities are responding to the reports with inspections followed by investment for overhauls.
- Providing feedback in real-time
Countries like Bolivia, Zambia, Ghana, Nepal, etc. are using OnTrack. OnTrack is a feedback platform for citizens to give real-time feedback on programs that the World Bank has initiated and funded. Citizens can let The World Bank know if government-administered projects are losing quality or velocity. This platform uses several communication channels in addition to interactive mapping to engage the citizens to be the watchdog for government efforts.