Australia has today launched the beta site for its redesigned e-government portal, australia.gov.au, asking for user feedback and displaying its current thinking on how the next generation website will look. The site follows on from the alpha site launched in July, ditching images for blocks of text that relate to broad areas of government services. For example, there is a health section, a law and justice section, and a money, benefits and tax section.
The National Environment Agency (NEA) of Singapore has won the E-Government Award at this year’s FutureGov Awards for its rapid implementation of a haze monitoring and public information portal during the haze crisis. When Singapore was badly hit by the haze last June, the NEA website attracted as many as 5 million visitors in a day.
Singapore government websites will soon be able to better recognise citizens’ needs with a new big data analytics tool. cOnce the pilot project goes live next year, the cloud-based tool can process and understand a citizen’s question accurately and provide an answer within seconds. This capability will enable citizens to better navigate government services and get personalised advice when using online services. The tool also provide government agencies with insights on citizens’ needs and priorities.
The Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA), the country’s telecoms regulator and central government IT agency, launched a pilot for a mobile app yesterday that aims to engage consumers to obtain better insights into consumers’ mobile broadband usage experience. “We hope consumers will download the MyConnection SG app and volunteer as NIMI testers to help IDA improve their broadband service experience,” explained Jacqueline Poh, Managing Director, IDA.
The NSW government is calling on the state’s best developers to help design apps to boost government service delivery, using open data. Finance and services minister, Dominic Perrottet, said citizens deserve state of the art services and we’d like to co-design them with the best and brightest minds in the private sector.
The New South Wales state government called on businesses to help design the next generation of apps to boost government service delivery using open data. Dominic Perrottet, New South Wales Minister for Finance and Services, launched the latest round of the apps4nsw competition this morning. apps4nsw is a series of events aimed at encouraging the citizens and businesses to use open data to create innovative web and mobile apps.
The New South Wales state government has won the Connected Government award at this year’s FutureGov Awards for its new one stop shop service. The state government was previously delivering fragmented services to citizens through around 400 shop fronts, over 30 call centres, more than 800 websites and 8,000 separate phone numbers – all operated by different agencies with different processes and systems.
Nineteen government organisations were recognised last week at the eighth annual FutureGov Awards. The National Environment Agency bagged the most number of awards last week, including the Government Organisation of the Year. It also won the E-Government award for its rapid implementation of a haze monitoring and public information portal. It’s i-Care project won the Technology Leadership award for its achievements in citizen satisfaction – a compliments to complaints ratio of 16:1.
The Indian government has rolled out an online dashboard for anyone to track the attendance of government officials, which is recorded by biometric terminals in their offices. Attendance.gov.in shows real-time updates as government employees scan their fingerprints or iris when they come in to work. The biometric system is already being used by 50,750 employees from 149 organisations.
The Australian government has released a new cloud policy to urge departments and agencies to consider cloud first. The new arrangement also allows them to store certain data on the public cloud. The new cloud policy requires government organisations to adopt cloud where it is fit for purpose, provides adequate protection of government data and delivers value for money, states a joint release by Senator the Hon Mathias Cormann, Minister for Finance, Senator the Hon George Brandis QC, Attorney-General and the Hon Malcolm Turnbull MP, Minister for Communication.
To support its open data initiative, the government needs “an effective platform for the management of environmental information that the public can use with greater efficiency,” said Analiza Teh, Undersecretary, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources. The government currently uses several systems both for monitoring and managing data internally, as well as publishing information and applications for citizens and businesses, said Bresilda Gervacio, Human Resource Development and Information Systems Assistant Secretary.
Youths in Makassar city, Indonesia, gathered last week at a hackathon to build web and mobile applications to tackle top urban challenges of the city. The winning application will be implemented by the city government. These 500 youths focused on Makassar’s key concerns, including unemployment, social security service, healthcare, education, waste management, free training and microfinance for small enterprises, city’s park, public housing, and law enforcement.
The latest draft of Australia’s federal cloud computing policy insists that agencies “must” adopt cloud so long as it’s fit for purpose, protects user data and represents value for money. The 14 page paper, signed by minister for finance Mathias Cormann and minister for communications Malcolm Turnbull, aims to “reduce the cost of government ICT by eliminating duplication and fragmentation, and will lead by example in using cloud services to reduce costs, lift productivity and develop better services.”
The Indian Government will have 5 million employees using its new official email service by March 2015. Currently, around a million officials are using the service and this will be bumped up to 5 million by March, said Ram Sewak Sharma, Secretary, Department of Electronics and Information Technology, in local media reports. The project has been given a budget of INR 1 billion (US$ 16.3 million), including the cost of expanding infrastructure and strengthening security of servers used to store the emails, Sharma added.
The first phase of the platform will be launched at the end of the year with functions allowing officials to manage citizen data and exchange information with other ministries and local governments, according to Vietnamese media reports. The platform will be upgraded in 2015 with cloud technology, and capabilities to handle more complex datasets and mobile users, it added.
Indonesia has been recognised for its open government achievements by the Open Government Partnership (OGP) gathering at the United Nations in New York this week. The OGP highlighted Indonesia’s “key achievement” in launching an “online service where citizens submit reports on the quality and completion of public works”. Meanwhile, the President of Indonesia, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, gave a speech launching the summit.
The Philippines’ initiative to engagement citizens in deciding National Budget priorities has been ranked the best in Asia by the Open Government Partnership. The Grassroots Participatory Budgeting Programme (GPBP) encourages local communities and civil society organisations to work with local governments in proposing priorities for the National Budget. The initiative was ranked third overall and was the only one from Asia included in the top 10 ranking by Open Government Partnership.
The NSW Government has released the first two instalments in its mandatory checklist of specifications and contract terms all telco suppliers into the state’s public sector will have to meet from now on. The telco demands have been developed by the government’s procurement and technical standards working group. Any purchases that don’t meet the group’s requirements will now require sign off from the panel before they can go ahead.
Residents in New Delhi will soon be able to dial a helpline if they need assistance in the event of a natural disaster. Information received through distress calls made to this three-digit helpline will be channeled to relevant agencies for immediate action. These agencies include the Delhi Police, armed forces and other emergency responders.
Email is still the primary tool for government officials, while newer tools still lag behind, an exclusive report for FutureGov has found. The report – ‘Government Connectivity, Citizen Engagement and Economic Impact in Asia Pacific’ – was commissioned by Cisco Systems, and surveyed over 100 selected senior officials across Australia, Malaysia, India and Singapore.