April issue: e-government does its homework

E-Government has set out to catch up on its homework. In this issue, you will learn, among other things, how chatbots can also be used in the administration in the future, how the tourism industry is being made fit for higher web semantics and how educational identity is being introduced in schools. It should also be mentioned that Federal Councillor Ueli Maurer’s initiative is bearing fruit and the eGovernment Roundtable is not only establishing itself in the federal administration, but is also opening up to the cantons. It’s good to see that things are moving forward. I’m happy to provide a few more suggestions that have been successfully implemented abroad for a long time. But I am pleased that something is happening. That after talking comes doing. And that there is a real exchange about doing! What is sad, of course, is that the every-man-for-himself project attitude is still omnipresent. “We solved the problem a long time ago” – is the popular response, for example to educational identity. Or worse: “Facebook and Google have been doing that for a long time. They can do it much better than the administration!” Not to mention the demands to use services that were designed with bureaucracy in mind from the start. Motto: “The will counts, not the quality I have taken myself by the nose and changed sides in the discussion about the eID. Even if the bill currently before parliament is only the second best, it is much better than waiting another three years. I therefore fully support it. It is urgent that it is passed and that the private sector then offers the appropriate solutions as soon as possible! New problems are being added to this old attitude that has not yet been overcome: or – depending on one’s point of view – are joining them. Ready-built solutions including support for the first year of use cannot even be given away. Example: IDV (Identity Network Switzerland). And fully functioning systems have to be replaced by new systems, which inevitably have lower maturity and less functionality. Example: GEVER in those federal offices that have digital document management under control. At some point, the new e-government strategy will explain to us how all this will move us forward. We’re waiting for it, but you can’t say we’re excited. What is important at the moment is that the homework that has accumulated is actually done. Perhaps Swiss e-government will make it into the “Gymi”. At least with a little coaching. But that still has time! For now, work has to be done. So that the next major national project has a suitable foundation – and not, as in the case of the educational identity, fundamental work that has to be done under great time pressure. The motto of the digital present is “preparation instead of planning! This also applies to the administration. I wish you interesting insights while reading the April issue of Societybyte. Yours sincerely, Reinhard Riedl

AUTOR/AUTORIN: Reinhard Riedl

Reinhard Riedl heads the BFH Centre Digital Society and edits the online magazine SocietyByte. He was president of the Swiss Informatics Society and the International Society for New Music Bern IGNM.

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