Local and regional government contexts differ: Some are rural, some urban, while others are mixed; some are densely populated, others are not; responsibilities, service portfolios and socio-economic mix vary. That said, local and regional government are faced with the same technology dilemmas as other parts of the public and private sectors, that is: How to optimise the use of technology.
The closer to citizens and businesses the better equipped government is to deliver services relevant to the specific context. In many cases local and regional government is responsible for up to 70-80% of all public service delivery, and where they are not, increasing decentralisation is often underway.
Emerging technologies and concepts like Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Blockchain, Internet of Things (IoT) and smart sustainable cities and communities provides both opportunities and risks. That said, the digital transformation of service production and delivery is often overseen in the larger political and academic discussion. It is also often overlooked by national strategic, despite increased decentralisation of service delivery.
In this context, the session will discuss concrete and real challenges and opportunities to sustain the real value adding digital transformation of local and regional government including its implications for policy makers and public administrations. With a focus on small and medium sized authorities in both rural and urban areas the session will address three key questions:
Session themes include: technology options, service production and delivery ecosystems, benefit realization, change management and transformation frameworks, user needs, inclusive and accessible service design, participatory and knowledge-based decision making, key enablers, inter- and intra-governmental collaboration, partnerships and outsourcing forms.
The session will foster discussion on:
The session will highlight selected experiences and lessons learned by local and regional government globally and showcase real examples in the process.
The session will be a thematic debate involving representatives from the local and regional government and the broader ecosystem (e.g. local and regional government umbrella organisations, central and state government, academia and the private sector) to discuss how a collaborative approach could lead to address the issues raised under the above objectives.