Investing in e-governance for sustainable development

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News
  • 2011•10•23     Macao

    From 26 to 28 September 2011, the UNU International Institute for Software Technology (UNU-IIST) co-organized the 5th International Conference on Theory and Practice of Electronic Governance, ICEGOV2011, in Tallinn, Estonia, in cooperation with the eGovernance Academy of Estonia (under the patronage of the Estonian Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communication) and the Center for Technology in Government, University of Albany (USA). As ICEGOV series organizer, UNU-IIST has continued to play a leading role in the development of electronic governance policy and implementation, transforming interactions between governments, citizens and civil society.

    ICEGOV2011 considered how government investments in technology can result in economic and social benefits and contribute to national development goals. With keynote speakers including the President of Estonia, Toomas Hendrik Ilves, the event attracted over five-hundred practitioners, researchers, policy makers, and industry and NGO representatives from 65 countries. Participants shared the latest findings and explored community-oriented, multi-disciplinary perspectives on the theory and practice of electronic governance.

    “A public sector information technology approach that is citizen-centered, secure and transparent is the future of all good governance in the twenty-first century.”

    During his keynote, President Ilves discussed Estonia’s uptake of electronic governance and its impacts on public transparency, trust, security and changing relationships between the public and private sectors.

    By “opening governance processes to inspection though e-tenders and publication of expenses and incomes online” and “eliminating the nodes of opaque, discretionary and arbitrary decision-making,” information technology has had a “cleansing effect on the operations of government and the public sector in general,” President Ilves said.

    “Consistent ranking of Estonia as the least corrupt among once-communist countries is directly the result of this information technology-based transparency”, he concluded. “We are e-believers. We are proud to be pioneers in e-government and convinced that a public sector information technology approach that is citizen-centered, secure and transparent is the future of all good governance in the twenty-first century.”

    Following the President’s keynote, Dr. Tomasz Janowski, Senior Research Fellow at UNU-IIST, presented a tutorial on Electronic Governance for Sustainable Development. Governments around the world are using their electronic governance programs to advance sustainable development and to develop a model and policy framework for integrating electronic governance programs with sustainable development initiatives.

    About the ICEGOV series

    Electronic government involves the use of information and communication technology to transform the workings of government organizations and their relationships with citizens, businesses and other arms of government. There is a growing recognition that over-reliance on technology, insufficient collaboration in government, lack of emphasis on building human capacity and inadequate public consultation all limit possible benefits of government reform initiatives around the world. Developed by UNU-IIST, the ICEGOV framework aims to guide systematic development of electronic governance to help overcome these challenges.

    UNU-IIST is also the series organizer of the ICEGOV annual conferences. The first four editions of ICEGOV were held in Macao (ICEGOV2007), Egypt (ICEGOV2008), Bogota (ICEGOV2009), and Beijing (ICEGOV2010). The next conference is scheduled for Albany, New York (USA) in 2012.

    For more information see the UNU-IIST website.