The government of New South Wales, Australia, is ramping up its ICT reforms agenda—with plans to drag key agencies out of the “dark ages” into 21st century technology and service delivery programs.
New South Wales’ just-unveiled (ICT) reforms program will make better use of the state’s US$2.05 billion (AUD$2 billion) technology budget—while rolling out mobile apps, real-time access to open data, and a private government cloud tapping into virtualised and shared services.
NSW’s new 10-year ICT strategy, unveiled by State Minister for Finance and Services, Greg Pearce, revitalises the state’s technology and telecommunications activities, at the same time, improving access to public transport, health, education and emergency services.
Key planks supporting the state’s ICT Strategy 2012 focus on creating open government, improving access to government data in an open-access environment, fast-tracking investment in cloud and virtualisation technology, and modernising information management programs.
The state is also racing to improve its ICT procurement effort—with better engagement with the industry, including feedback and access to latest technology.
Minister Greg Pearce said the state’s latest ICT agenda is one of the most ambitious and comprehensive over-hauls to date.
These reforms bring NSW out of the “dark ages,” and into the 21st century, he said. “ICT provides an avenue to better deliver services to residents, while enabling government to be more flexible in the conduct of its business.”
The state wants to put citizens at the centre of decision-making, Minister Pearce said.
“Improving the way we use ICT to deliver government services requires a comprehensive ICT strategy that applies across the public sector with strong governance arrangements to drive it.”
The NSW government has elevated ICT as one of its top priorities—while also establishing a governance structure that requires agencies to take responsibility for priorities and core decision-making.
Michael Coutts-Trotter, Director-General, Department of Finance and Services, and Government Chief Information Officer, said the state’s ICT strategy complements a digital economy industry action plan.
He said there are significant opportunities for NSW to deploy new platforms, including cloud-based and virtualised services.
“This 2012 ICT strategy sets out a roadmap for the NSW government to adopt a service orientation to ICT infrastructure.”
Mr Coutts-Trotter said the state will take a “whole-of-government” approach to ICT investment, and work closely with an industry-based ICT advisory panel. “We want to leverage the latest thinking and experience from the private sector.”
Among planned activities, the state will deliver more real-time information through mobile apps, trip planning tools, and integrated electronic ticketing.
Mobile apps will include “Live Traffic NSW,” bus time-table SMS alerts, NSW Police “Project Eyewatch,” and real-time hospital emergency information.
Disclosure of government information will also be available on-line, and in real-time.
Additionally, the state will offer a single 24/7 government phone number, a “customer-friendly” government web portal, and one-stop shops for access to citizen services.
NSW Director-General, Michael Coutts-Trotter, is delivering a keynote address at FutureGov Magazine’s FutureGov Forum NSW being held 21st June 2012 in Sydney http://www.futuregov.asia/events/futuregov-forum-nsw-2012/
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