Digital is a big component of government services today. The drive for digital transformation began many years ago – moving from a legacy paper-based approach to a digital model. Presently, governments around the world are at various stages in adopting the digital mindset and processes in serving their citizens. But as we know, digital transformation and digital services as a whole is a huge endeavor that is ever-changing with the rapid growth in technology.
There are other challenges as well within the digital environment. According to the recent Digital IQ report by PwC Canada, “Canadian businesses see themselves as digitally aware, but they need to close the say-do gap on digital transformation or risk missing out altogether.” This “say-do” gap is the gap between what Canadian executives think is needed and what they are doing to bridge the gap. Heather Simpson, Partner, Consulting, PwC Canada, writes about this in her piece, Raising the digital IQ of all levels of Canadian government, by pointing out that these gaps are also evident in the public sector as well, and are just a few of the challenges facing senior managers in government in a time of digital disruption. With governments operating in the digital sphere, finding and retaining talent and skills is a major challenge in the digital transformation process. Governments now have to compete for talent and skills from the same pool that high tech companies are going after.
Data is being produced and collected at an incredible rate today. The DOMO Data Never Sleeps 6.0 report states that “over 2.5 quintillion bytes of data are created every single day. By 2020, it’s estimated that 1.7MB of data will be created every second for every person on earth.” That’s an incredible amount of data. So where is our data and what it’s being used for? Howard Dawson tackles this issue of our data in his article by answering what’s for sale, who’s buying it and what you can do about it.
To expand data coverage in rural Canada, the federal government kicked off an auction for wireless spectrum by putting regional and national operators against each other. At stake was the right to low-band 600 MHz spectrum, a valuable section of the airwaves that could confer a long-term competitive advantage to the winners. Be sure to read the article on the 600MHz auction and its deployment, which will provide a unique opportunity to connect Canada’s hardest-to-reach communities. The article takes a look at the advantages of 600 MHz for covering rural areas in the United States, the potential for Canada and how the government may be squandering an opportunity for a major change.
The other articles in this edition focus on unlocking the potential to transform how we fund social services, using innovation to advance results and the impact of 5G mobile networks now in operation in select cities across the US and South Korea, and how it can benefit Canadian cities.
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