Events - 18.09.2019 - 00:00 

Networking, not administering: How public authorities get "smart"

A current study shows how leaders from politics and administration can promote "Smart Government”. The results will be presented at the Smart Government Day on 24 September 2019 at the Congress Hotel Einstein in St.Gallen. After the opening keynote, Vitali Klitschko, Mayor of Kiev, will give a talk on Smart City Kiev.
Source: HSG Newsroom

18 September 2019. Numerous initiatives in the public sector promise to create a new model for public services through the use of new technologies and methods. With Smart Government, public administrations strive to both actively and passively interact and collaborate with stakeholders to better understand their needs and environments. They do this by connecting and interconnecting the physical, digital, public and private spheres – in strict compliance with relevant data protection regulations. 

In Smart Government, the focus is on people. Prof. Dr. Ali Asker Guenduez (assistant professor for digital government), Head of Smart Government Lab: "If we've learned anything from the e-government initiatives of the last twenty years, it's that the technology is the least of our problems. It is certainly a decisive factor and a necessary prerequisite, but one that is usually fulfilled. If digitisation fails, this is usually down to humans. It is therefore time to go beyond our fascination with technology and think about specific implementations – together with the people who will use these technologies."

Four main areas of application

Smart Government has enormous potential for public administration and its stakeholders in four key areas of application:

1. Better decisions in politics and administration - Thanks to new methods of data collection (e.g. the Internet of Things and Big Data) and more powerful data analysis and visualisation tools, smart government solutions are able to significantly improve certain strategic and operational decisions in politics and administration.

2. Making public services and internal processes more user-friendly, effective and efficient – today's citizens and businesses expect public services to be as user-friendly as supplied by commerce. Several keywords describe this trend: "once-only"11, "no-stop-management"12, "24/7-support" and "self-service". The aim is to put the user centre stage and focus on user experience and customer journeys. For example, electronic forms and automated data procurement can noticeably reduce effort in public administration. 

3. Enabling innovative and collaborative solutions in public administration and other sectors – Public authorities have three key strengths that are critical for the development of innovative solutions: (1) extensive databases, (2) direct access to population and enterprises, and (3) scalability. By sharing these strengths with third parties, either within the public administration (e.g. with other cantons or municipalities) or with other sectors (e.g. universities and research institutes, startups, NGOs and enterprises), a public administration can initiate innovative and cooperative solutions in the spirit of the "Government as a Platform" idea.

4. Promoting population participation – New analogue and digital applications and formats enable more direct and intensive interaction and collaboration between public administrations and the population, civil society and business. There are examples both in policy making and at local level (e.g. greater involvement in urban planning).

You can find the complete study here 

Swiss Smart Government Day in St. Gallen with lecture by Vitali Klitschko

The study will be presented on Swiss Smart Government Day by PwC and the Smart Government Lab. The Swiss Smart Government Day deals solely with topics of smart administration. The conference will take place on 24 September 2019 at Campus E of the University of St.Gallen (Hotel Congress Einstein) and brings together experts from administration, politics, business and science. Current topics such as these will be discussed: Agile administration, innovative financing models, citizen-centric services, cyber security, or trust in artificial intelligence.