The Centre for eGovernance Development (CeGD) and Microsoft prepared this well organized Conference, with interesting and valuable content and professional presenters. This three-day event targeted at government policy makers and decision makers who focus on how technology can transform the public sector in the areas of citizen services, education, and healthcare.
The conference also aims to provide a platform for leaders, technocrats, researchers, practitioners, and academics across the SEE region to present and discuss their research findings, experiences, strategies, policies, technologies, case studies, and best practices in the field of eGovernment and eGovernance. The Centre for E-Government of Danube University Krems is cooperating with the Centre for eGovernance Development since its foundation in 2008 and also took part in the Bled Forum 2010.
A special website is available at where detailed information, including the agenda and list of speakers, is provided.
Confernece Agenda (pdf)
The whole event was filmed and all presentations are available at the CeGD Homepage.
Welcome and Opening Remarks Mr. Blaž Golob, Director CeGD
Blaž Golob is the founding Director of the Centre for eGovernance Development for South East Europe established during the Slovenian EU Presidency in May 2008. He is also the president of the Bled Forum on Europe Research Association which organises an annual international conference on future challenges and responses of the European Union. The Center for E-Government of the Danube University Krems is following the activities of the Centre for eGovernance Development since its esteblishment and is activly cooperating since Blaž Golob’s participation at the E-Democracy Conference in Vienna in May 2009.
Short welcome speeches by Ms. Tina Teržan, State Secretary at the Ministry of Public Administration, Government of Slovenia as well as by the Microsoft Vice President for Public Sector Europe & Asia, Mr. Niels Soelberg. As Vice President of the Public Sector for Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) Mr. Soelberg works closely with the Area Public Sector GMs in France, UK, Germany, Central Eastern Europe, Middle East, Africa and Western Europe to align on strategies, share best practices, and pursue new growth opportunities across the region.
The Microsoft vision in this field: “Helping governments better serve their citizen through flexible solutions, products and partnership.” Enabling efficiency – engaging citizens – creating opportunity.
The topic of Mr. Soelberg’s presentation: “Cloud computing”
What is it? – computing power at massive scale and connecting to a variety of smart devices.
Why the cloud? Accelerates the speed of innovation and lowers the costs.
Types of “cloud”:
- “Local cloud”
- “National cloud”
- “Global cloud”
Government cloud opportunities – Increase citizen interaction speed to market
Continues cost reduction – from capex to opex
More efficient and greener ICT infrastructure – datacenter efficiency reduces Co2
Broader benefits of cloud computing
- More choice and agility
- Cost savings/efficiency
- New technologies available sonner
- Access to unprecedented computing power
- Wealth creation
- Address societal challenges
- Jobs and economic growth
- IT skills: the new literacy (China more PhD per year than Europe and US together).
Enabling efficiency: creating policies that are relevant and can be implemented and measured; use partners to accelerate modernization.
Engaging citizen: build your eGovernment platform with the cloud in mind; share your government data by using the Open Data initiative by leveraging online services.
Use the Microsoft partner in learning program to make education more innovative, prioritise investments in Education ICT and shape your future to help your citizens to realize their full potential.
Cooperation in South Eastern Europe and Challenges for Governance and Human Capacity Development
Mr. Mladen Dragaševič, Head of Unit for Human Capacity Building, Regional Cooperation Council (RCC)
Cooperation among countries in the region and roll of RCC. Two years of operation now. Whole staff from the region (Sarajevo and Brussels). RCC works under the political umbrella of the South East Europe Cooperation Process (SEECP).
Main focal points:
- Supporting economic and social development
- Promote regions European and Euro-Atlantic integration
- Links the region with donor community in areas with a regional dimension
Fife priority areas: economic and social development, energy and infrastructure, JHA, Security cooperation, BHC and parliamentary cooperation.
RCC “Big picture” (see slides 4). Avoid overlapping of activities in the region.
Priorities actions – BHC
Support to higher education reform;
Development of a regional strategy for research and development for innovation for the Western Balkans;
Taking over the coordination of Ljubljana Process 01/2011.
Role of RCC in the whole region is to monitor, to guide, to facilitate the realisation of initiatives and projects, but not to implement.
Key economic challenges in the WBC’s.
- Necessity for new model of development and growth
- Re-positioning in European and global constellation
- Poor physical, institutional and social infrastructure
- Under-utilization of existing resources
- Low innovation capacity
- Slow reforms –strengthening the EU Accession leverage
- Better synchronizing and focusing activities of regional cooperation networks
Corruption is still a big obstacle in the region (Corruption Perceptions Index 2009).
Current regional instruments e.g. Regional School for Public Administration (RESPA) will be open in November this year.
The Future of Information Society in EU and Electronic South East Europe (eSEE)
Ms. Diana Simić (FOI), Chairwoman eSEE Initiative
After meeting Ms. Diana Simic last week at the CECIIS conference in Varazdin, Croatia, we again had the pleasure to meet her in Portoroz.
Economic realities moving faster than political realities…
Digital Agenda for Europe – Why?
Make the best use of ICT to speed up economic …
Digital Agenda for Europe – seven priority areas
- Digital single market
- Interoperability and standards
- Trust and security
- Fast and ultra fast internet access
- Investment in research and development (status and actions)
- Digital literacy, skills and inclusion
- ICT to address social changes – climate change, rising healthcare costs, ageing population
For everything clear targets and deadlines (unfortunately not for research and development).
eSEE Initiatives Institutional Framework:
eSEE Agenda Plus (2007)
- Single South East European Information Space
- Innovation and Investment in ICT Research and Education
- Inclusive Information Society
The Global Challenges and the role of Good Governance, Millennium Project
Mr. Jerome C. Glenn, Director Millennium Project
Jerome C. Glenn co-founded and directs the Millennium Project, a leading global participatory think tank supported by international organizations, governments, corporations, and NGOs, which produces the internationally recognized State of the Future annual reports for the past 13 years.
Global challenges and Good Governance (slides)
The world is in a race between implementing ever-increasing ways to improve the human condition and the seemingly ever-increasing complexity and scale of global problems.
The Role of Good Governance is to Win the Race
15 global challenges – the agenda today (slide 3)
Idea of synergetic analysis! -> competitive advantages the old concept – new is, how can we improve our share by cooperating with our competitors in an area, where we both can’t do improvements by our own.
In the afternoon workshops took place on the theme: “From Vision Building to Information Society Strategy”
- Legal regulation
- Institution setting
Participation at workshop on legal regulation. The first day ended with a workshops reporting (10 min presentation from each group).
The workshop results stressed the importance of Open Data which was not mentioned today, but will be a topic on the agenda of the second day. Make available governmental data, make transparent what data the governments possess and take away the fear of using governmental services on the internet. Besides that, make available new opportunities to implement new applications and services by users and the business.
The Challenges of cross-border cooperation and interoperability
Mr. Jožef Gričar, Faculty of Organizational Sciences, University of Maribor, Slovenia
“The rise of the users”, ICT is open up, so open up as a institution, business, governments…! Try Living Labs – experiment and test new approaches, applivations, products and initiatives directly with and by the users.
Part of the ALADIN network – ALpe Adria Danube universities INitiatives (One representative for every university, very informal).
The challenge of Interoperability and Digital public services
Mr. Lorenzo Madrid, World Wide Director Govt. Interoperability, Microsoft
The vertical view of E-Government, every agency building up its own ICT solutions (vertical). Missing is the citizen perspective (horizontal). Need of the citizen should be in the focus of governmental work – citizen in focus!
Interoperability: UNDP definition -> are services made for citizens?
New service: Amazon Fresh (delivering fresh goods home, ordered over the internet). Example for added value – connected value.
Interoperability is about maturity and evolution of government, is a public sector priority. Government connected system – for the citizen different access channels over governmental portal (web, e-mail, DTV, fax, phone, person,…)
Connected government – existing trends: standards and interoperability frameworks. Worldwide very close to each other. Standards are good, but do not assure the success of interoperable services.
Good practice example: SWIFT Network (financial sector). 9000 banks in 206 countries worldwide.
Other approach: software enables transformation: (photo formats: jpg ore raw, can all be changed and transformed one to each other and back.
Constraints to deploy interoperable e-government services:
- Lack of experiences leading networks forms of government
- Insufficient or lack in cross-boundary governance structure
- Lack of policies that allow new innovative resource allocation models,
- Lack of policies that engender investments in the principles of scalability and sustainability of solutions
- Focus on crises oriented services.
Looking beyond technology: “connecting people, data and diverse systems” its about people (semantic, organizational, law and policy) and technical interoperability (data, applications, infrastructure).
What can be done?
- look at citizen and business needs (e.g approach in Austria– life events, prioritize transaction).
- look beyond technology (semantic, organization, re-engineering).
- develop and nature required capabilities (maturity models, governance, leadership)
Above all of that we need policies and regulations, the administration is following this policies and regulation.
Capabilities towards interoperability (see slides)
Good practice example: Columbian government (Video 3 min.). Rise in UN E-Gov Benchmark from 2008 to 2010. Achieved this by
- Good Governance (i.e.: COBIT)
- Simplification & pertitioning (enterprise architecture, remember pareto!)
- Interaction (the Boyd Cycle)
Achieving interoperability through
Above that all and most important: leadership support
Missing some future perspective -> proactive government!
Microsoft Vision Cloud Computing
Mr. Wilfried Grommen, Regional Technology Officer for Microsoft
Vision Cloud Computing – We’re all in
Cloud services – Microsoft centric. What can I do with it?
What… just in time provisioning and scaling of resources on shared hardware.
Why… accelerates the speed and lowers the cost of IT.
But why now?
Key enabler of cloud computing:
- Hardware 10x more efficiency
- Microsoft Datacenter evolution – today all storage power for one country in one container!
- Application Model: 10x faster time to market
- Costs: 10x cheaper to operate
Cloud computing is already here: software as a service (SaaS) – platform as a service (PaaS) – infrastructure as a service (IaaS).
Basis for this development is also the broadband availability and the investments that governments are making today.
The current model extends to the cloud: traditional to cloud model. Can help SME in further development and growth.
Deployment models: public and/or private cloud plus trusted (secured) clouds.
Open Government Data Initiative: possibility to export governmental data into the cloud. Use this data and develop new applications and services. Quick wins in this area are possible. Good Practice Example in this area is the City of Vancouver/Canada.
Trust – Cloud Experience
Regulatory – political – risk considerations:
- Connectivity- interoperability: openness
- Data protection, privacy (EU regulation – directive, but not “cloud ready” yet) and security
- Data sovereignty: national vs. international
- Liability, protections and expectations of operators / cloud providers.
Governments are challenged to deliver – Cloud opportunity
- Continue cost reduction -> from Capex to Opex
- More efficient and Greener ICT infrastructure -> Datacenter efficiency
- Increase citizen interaction -> time to market
- Continue cost reduction: lower cost ownership. Simplify management and maintenance, improve internal productivity
Governments Cloud opportunities: transparency, scaling, time to market, citizen participation. e.g.
- managing the Belgium EU Presidency on dynamic cloud platform HUDDLE (video),
- recovery.gov from US-government as a example for transparency,
- eyeonearth.com from the European Environmental Agency measurements of water and air quality in 18 languages. Possibility of feedback.
- NGO example: Central Europe on demand for the Hungarian See Life guard service.
Build trust in clouds through service level agreements!
Measurement for success – The role of indicators
Mr. Pavle Sicherl, Sicenter and Faculty of Law, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia
Start with 7 E-Pillars for E-Government that was developed by the Centre for eGovernance Development for South East Europe. Better governance needs many things but also tools for fact based decision making.
Innovative economic and social development. Balance between desirability and feasibility. Two elements of the 7 E-Pillars CeGD model for IS and E-Governance: sustainable development and equal opportunity and participation.
Some general characteristics of indicators: system of indicators are used at many levels, The role of indicators in the knowledge-based governance is to increase capacity of the government to effectively manage its resources and implement sound policies Indicators are tools that can aggregate, quantify, visualise and simplify information for more effective decision making and participation in different phases…
Free web time distance monitoring tool is available at www.gaptimer.eu
Meeting the Unfulfilled Promise of Gov 2.0
Mr. Ruediger Dorn, Director Applied Innovation | Public Sector Europe, Middle East & Africa Microsoft
Internal Social Networks in governments do not work. “You can’t rebuild Facebook, but you also can not ignore Facebook”.
Cloud Computing Workshop
Mr. Wilfried Grommen, Regional Technology Officer for Microsoft
Three groups; our deals with citizen approach and finding business cases.
First group: cloud for “cost reduction” – “green IT”.
- Don’t need change software every few years, pay for licenses.
- Security as a risk. Costs could rise after some years, when all you data an info is in a cloud. Cost efficiency per inhabitant, depending on the size of the country.
Second group: cloud for “time to market” and “citizen services”.
- Legal question, data protection act not in place in some SEE’s
- Security and transparency as basis for the trust of citizen in governmental services (with or without cloud)
- Who is the owner of the data?
Tired group: “Cloud could become a utility”
- Is cloud an opportunity for local and regional governments?
- Could cloud deal with “e-id” or “citizen “ e-mail services?
- Could the government runn datacenter for start ups, or L&R govs? Local governments are not in the position to make invastments to build up services and infrastructure.
Shape the Future – Public Private Partnership for Successful Information Society Development
Mr. Joice Fernandes, Worldwide Senior Director for Public Private Alliances, Microsoft
Strategy approach: European 2020 – smart, sustainable and inclusive.
Microsoft program: shape the future. The most important resource today is knowledge. Every household should have one computer.
Using the cloud (Microsoft cloud of knowledge).
Learning paradigm shift, new forms of learning.
Election of issues that reflects Europe 2020 Digital Agenda, global challenges and SEE regional challenges for Information Society Development
Blaž Golob, Director CeGD
Feedback by participants: Focus on PPP, through improve actions in the future; PPP not only with ICT-sector, but think also of including other business sectors into PPP -> ICT should be the driving force in this regard.
Simone: Network for excellence on e-democracy in the region, cross boarder cooperation, together with Vasko Kronevski (CEO Nextsense).
Input by the Center for E-Government
Paradigm shift – Good governance through Open Government Principles.
Basis and guiding principle for managing public administration and political actions.
- Because it creates transparency in administration and policy, which is the key basis for trust in the state institution and administration by the people.
- A pro-active government should mandatory by electronic means make available raw data and information.
- This again is then the basis for trust and innovation in society and thus allows the collaboration and participation in networks, e.g. company and business analyzes this data, develops applications and brings new expertise in policy and administration.
- For this we need new leadership that understand the necessity that policy and administartion must change radically for this: from closed to open culture, willingness to transfer skills and competences… policy must be a platform for ideas, for co-operation (O’Reily), then you can use the innovative strength of the citizens, to be able to solve the complex political questions that we are facing today and in the future.