Interregional Capacity Development Workshop on Digital Government Implementation Toolkit for Sustainable Development (DIGIT4SD)
Interregional Capacity Development Workshop on Digital Government Implementation Toolkit for Sustainable Development (DIGIT4SD) will be held at the United Nations Conference Centre (UNCC), Bangkok, from 23 to 24 of July 2019. The workshop is jointly co-organized by UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA) and the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN ESCAP). This programmed activity is part of the project implementation of UN Development Account Project on “Evidence-based e-government policies for advancing governmental service delivery and accountability in support of the Sustainable Development Goals”.
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development has embraced the spread of ICTs for their potential to accelerate human progress, to bridge divides and to develop knowledge societies. However, countries in special situations like least development countries (LDCs), small island developing states (SIDS), and landlocked developing countries (LLDCs) face geopolitical realities and socio-economic dependencies, along with prevalent development challenges such as the scarcity of resources, spatial segregation, capacity gaps and barriers to major markets. It is critical that LDCs, SIDs and LLDCs have the technical know-how to take advantage of the opportunity to leverage digital government to support the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Targets.
DIGIT4SD is a toolkit designed to build and strengthen institutional capacity for planning, implementing and evaluating digital government initiatives in SDG implementation, through data-informed evidence-based approaches.
The toolkit includes various modules that will help targeted countries to develop e-government initiatives in supporting selected SDGs or targets. It also builds on the findings, policy options and recommendations in past editions of the UN E-Government Survey. Due to the all-encompassing character of the toolkit, it may be used by individuals as a self-learning tool and in classroom settings. It is possible for the user to take all modules and courses but also to only go through those that are selected by the personal preferences of the user.
At the same time, despite the much-reported benefits of information communication technologies (ICTs), its development and adoption by LDCs, SIDs and LLDCs in general have so far been limited due to insufficient telecommunications infrastructure and Internet connectivity, expensive Internet access, absence of adequate legal and regulatory frameworks, just to name a few. To address mentioned ICT challenges Governments of Asia-Pacific countries have endorsed Asia-Pacific Information Superhighway (AP-IS) initiative.
The Workshop aims to bring together mid-level to senior government officials and practioners from country groups (LDCs, SIDS and LLDCs) to build individual and institutional capacities learned through various digitalgov implementation toolkits, particularly the DiGIT4SD toolkit, and share and discuss contextual perspectives on how digital government practices can fully capitalize on the promises of digital technologies in supporting sustainable development. Non-government experts and other key stakeholders are also invited to stimulate discussions on advancing digital government and innovative practices in implementing the SDGs and targets.
LDCs, SIDS and LLDCs stand to benefit from good practices and lessons learnt from other more established e-government entities, as identified in the UN E-Government Surveys and illustrated through the DIGIT4SD toolkit. This will help to avoid possible costly pitfalls and to leap frog in e-government for sustainable development where possible.
This two-day meeting will be tightly structured, with a clear focus on capacity development through the DIGIT4SD toolkit and to share lessons learned among participating countries and other experts and stakeholders. It aims to:
- Build individual capacity and improve institutional capacity in countries to collect, analyse and use digital government data and related sectoral data;
- Build individual capacity and strengthen institutional capacity in countries to implement evidence-based government policies and strategies, in support of selected SDGs and Targets;
- Offer knowledge exchange and best practices to both improve existing projects as well as trigger new initiatives.