Technology

Technology is one of the main components of a digital society

Choosing the right technology and its systematic implementation are key issues in developing e-government. eGA’s extensive consulting experience confirms that countries that have built a strong technological foundation at the start of their digital development can build a sustainable e-state faster. In order to pay more attention to technology issues and to contribute to the realisation of governments’ digital transformation strategies and roadmaps, eGA established its Technology Programme in 2019.

The team of the Technology Programme at the e-Governance Academy, in cooperation with external experts, helps governments and organisations develop and introduce the technology through development of the e-government architecture.

E-government architecture is a well-defined practice for conducting public sector analysis, design, planning, and implementation. It uses a comprehensive approach at all times for the successful development and execution of strategy.

 

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Interoperability framework and implementation of technical solutions

Many business processes for digital services in governments cross different organisations. The information shared between those organisations must be completely understood by participants. It means that the digital systems must be built on common standards.

 

An interoperability framework is one of the most important agreements to be made when building digital societies. It should describe information sharing in a secure and trusted way so that organisations can build cross-organisational services.

eGA helps governments in developing their interoperability framework and architecture and provides the following related services:

  • Implementation of the once-only principle
  • Data architecture and data policy development
  • Development of open source policy and standards
  • Open data policy development
  • Building Enterprise Architecture of e-government solutions
  • Interoperability solution planning and deployment

eGA’s expertise is based on proven practice. The Estonian data exchange layer X-Road is an advanced and highly secure interoperability solution, enabling authentication, authorisation, secure logs management, time-stamped and encrypted data traffic and exchange. eGA experts have implemented the system in more than 10 countries and helped with the creation of related policies and frameworks.

Electronic identity frameworks and solutions

With the increasing provision and use of e-services, new forms of secure authentication are needed. Modern data management requires automated exchange of data, which in turn requires the existence of a strong authentication system for personal identification and authorisation.

 

From the government’s perspective, identity management is the administration of information associated with persons that can be identified, uniquely or together, in order to enable their use of government services.

eGA provides the following services to governments interested in the implementation of electronic identification (eID) systems:

  • Development of unique identifiers and registration of population as a necessary precondition for eID development;
  • Development of a certification system, i.e. digital identification system;
  • Development of secure electronic identity and digital signature roadmap;
  • Development of tokens of digital identity, such as ID card, digital ID card, mobile-ID, SMART-ID,;
  • Incorporation of the digital identity management system into interoperability framework;
  • Development of the legal environment and regulations for identity management;
  • Building a public-private partnership for the development, financing and cordination of digital identity management;
  • Organisation of capacity building and change management development for digital identity implementation;
  • Raising public awareness about identity management, privacy and data protection.

eGA’s expertise is based on proven practice. The Estonian digital identity management system has been a cornerstone of e-government infrastructure for more than 17 years, enabling secure use of e-services.

Digital databases and citizen portal

The citizen portal gives users (citizens, businesses, visitors) easy access to various e-services and provides the government with a solid and convenient platform for integrating and promoting new services both in smart phones and in all other digital devices.

 

eGA provides the following services:

  • Assessment of the current situation
  • Seminars with stakeholders to define needs and expectations towards e-services
  • Concept note of the citizen portal
  • Assistance with the development of the citizen portal

eGA expertise is based on proven practice. eGA experts have assisted in the development of the Estonian citizen portal (www.eesti.ee) and transferred their knowledge to many other countries. The Estonian portal was created in 2003 and has been updated many times, most recently in 2018.

Registration and management of e-government services and databases

The catalogue of interoperability solutions (CatIS) is a supplementary instrument for the coordination of state information systems, a tool for the development and administration of the data exchange layer. CatIS gives an overview of information systems, services and interoperability assets.  Also, it acts as the support system for the implementation of the once-only principle.

 

eGA provides the following services to governments interested in coordination of state information systems:

  • Organisational, legal, semantic and technical enhancement of the state infrastructure
  • Development of documentation
  • Development of a test version of CatIS
  • Assistance in the implementation phase
  • Practical trainings for specialists

eGA’s expertise is based on proven practice. Our experts have assisted in the coordination of state information systems in more than 10 countries who have implemented a data exchange platform.

Technical infrastructure

Cloud technology is a convenient, secure and cost-efficient solution for public sector institutions and providers of vital services to ensure the development of the information society. It simplifies the access of authorities to high-level expertise in server housing technology.

Cloud technology:

  • Improves the information security capacity of the public sector, as public services become standardised and no longer depend on a specific institution;
  • Improves competences related to hosting and administration of information systems;
  • Harmonises the quality of services;
  • Allows providing high-quality uninterrupted services;
  • Allows savings on hardware and software investments;
  • Supports innovation and the rapid implementation of new technological solutions.

 

eGA assists with the modernisation and renewal of existing information systems, to embrace the opportunities offered by cloud technology.

For that eGA provides the following services:

  • Assessment of facilities, hardware and information systems;
  • Designing guidebooks and supporting checklists setting out the methodology;
  • Designing a strategy for phasing out of the current environment and the migration of information systems;
  • Training ICT staff on the technical audit process and project management;
  • Development of terms of references for procurement
  • Recommendations and assistance in setting up a migration implementation team.

Our expertise is based on proven practice. eGA experts have assisted several governments on the development and implementation of new technological solutions to ensure the development of the information society.

e-Cabinet

The Information System for Cabinet Sessions, better known as e-Cabinet, is a powerful tool to streamline the government’s decision-making process and conduct government meetings in an electronic form – entirely without paper.

The eGA e-Cabinet platform is developed as an independent universal solution using the experience from this Estonian tailor-made solution. The platform is suitable for any government and is language independent.

 

At its core, the system is a multi-user database and scheduler that keeps relevant information organised and updated in real time, giving ministers a clear overview of each item under discussion. For the implementation of such systems, organisational changes, adjustment of legislation and coordination processes between information systems are needed.

Based on the Estonian experience, the main value of the implementation of the e-Cabinet solution is saving time on the Cabinet sessions. Prior to implementing the system, Estonian government sessions took 4-5 hours. Thanks to e-Cabinet, sessions last 30 minutes on average.

Also, with going paperless the implementation of e-Cabinet solution resulted in:

  • A faster decision-making process,
  • Acceleration of the pre-approval process,
  • Simpler scheduling of Cabinet sessions,
  • Better and faster information sharing before the Cabinet session,
  • Remote access to the information (for traveling Cabinet members),
  • Less errors and mistakes during the process (no re-typing or data insertion),
  • More transparency of the governance,
  • A better positive public image of the government, etc.