GOVTECH - Customer Service Delivery

Big Data for Citizen and Customer Service Delivery

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Mobile technology and cloud-enabled forms of communication, as well as the proliferation of social networks and geospatial tools have combined to create a new way of communicating.

Citizens are using these systems to express their demands in new ways and to take initiatives that have the potential to rapidly change the face of government service delivery programmes in the future.

“Innovations, such as Uber, and cutting-edge technologies, like autonomous cars, will not only have an impact on existing industries, but also ‘disrupt’ traditional public-service models. They allow citizens to become increasingly involved in our daily activities. This will create significant employment opportunities and bolster government service delivery programmes. I eventually envisage the establishment of highly efficient ‘decentralised’ government bodies that do not own any assets,” says Dr. Setumo Mohapi, the chief executive officer of the State Information Technology Agency (SITA).

While Dr. Mohapi’s vision may still be many years away, the Innovation track at this year’s Government Technology Conference (GovTech) will certainly provide delegates with a hint of the South African state structure of the future. As he says, “In this track, we want GovTech 2016 to highlight the ‘T’ in information and communications technology (ICT), placing credence on technologies that are currently changing or have the potential to significantly alter service delivery.”

Importantly, the two open discussion forums will provide delegates the opportunity to gain more knowledge on important initiatives, such as ICT’s role in forecasting drought and its role in helping solve the water scarcity challenge in South Africa – arguably, one of the biggest threats the country and the larger southern African region is facing, at present.

ICT also brings with it the ability to make a meaningful impact on other pressing areas on government’s agenda, such as providing early warning fire-detection capability to save lives and losses by its constituents. This is also expected to be major point of deliberation and discussion, in addition to systems, such as wearable devices that track health and wellbeing and three-dimensional printing opportunities.

GovTech 2016 will be held from 30 October to 02 November at Gallagher Convention Centre in Midrand, Gauteng, with its theme of ICT for Development, Access & Growth. SITA is proud to be partnering with a number of prominent players in the ICT industry all with the common aim of enabling service delivery through ICT for citizen empowerment. This year’s sponsors include Vodacom, MTN, Microsoft, Gijima, Accenture, Business Connexion, Huawei, Pinnacle, Intel and CEOS. Backed by the State Information Technology Agency, GovTech has become an important annual event in the South African ICT calendar, and Dr. Mohapi is convinced that this event will yet again provide a blueprint for government’s long-term “e-government” drive.

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Issue 68