Summit discusses e-Government challenges
Dubai, December 1, 2012
Major e-Government challenges being faced by Arab governments and the mechanisms to overcome them were discussed at a key telecom conference held in Dubai besides finding newer and better methods of delivering services to the public.
Workshops and plenary sessions were also organised alongside the The 'Arab Thought Foundation’s Eleventh Annual Conference' to complement their topic of focus, ‘Citizen and Future ofGovernments’.
Salem Khamis Al Shair Al Suwaidi, the deputy director general, Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) Information and eGovernment Sector, emphasised the fortifying role of eGovernment at the opening ceremony of the three-day conference.
The event also witnessed workshops on ‘Building infrastructure for future generations’, ‘Participative policy making: engaging stakeholders’ and ‘Delivering more with less – smaller government for better services’.
The eGovernment programme promotes openness in governance and aids in unrestricted and fair access to government services and information in a cost-effective manner. Even people from remote areas can have equal opportunity to access the information and contact leaders, he remarked.
"The adoption of social media becomes eminent here as it offers the necessary tool for individuals to communicate with their leaders and vice versa," he added.
Al Suwaidi also highlighted the examples of how the UAE governments and leaders use social media to maintain communication with the public. He referred to the United Nations’ E-Government Survey 2012 that pointed out Korea and the UAE were be the only countries to score 100 per cent on whether they take the views of citizens in the decision-making process.
He also added the importance of open data in promoting transparency and access to knowledge for all in addition to the fact that it is foreseen to yield economic returns of 30 billion and 140 billion eurosin direct and indirect transactions respectively.
Citing the key challenges, Al Suwaidi said, "These include the poor communication between the leaders and their people, the blockage of government information that the public rightfully deserves to know, corruption and other related social and political issues can be avoided or dealt with by adopting the eGovernment."
Al Suwaidi pointed out that four revolutions will help determine the future of governments. "These are the information revolution represented by Web 2.0, demographic revolution represented by the Internet generation, social revolution represented by social networking and the business revolution represented by the ability of companies to achieve new milestones through communication," he added.-TradeArabia News Service