Wednesday, September 11, 2013

I Think This Is A Really Good Idea. They Should Get On With It!

This appeared a few days ago:

Coalition pitches 'IT dashboard'

  • by: Stuart Kennedy, IT Editor
  • From: The Australian
  • September 03, 2013 12:00AM
THE Coalition, if elected, will open up an online window viewable by the public that tracks how major federal IT projects are performing and shake up oversight of government technology spending.
The proposed online dashboard window was one of a list of digital economy and e-government initiatives released yesterday in a joint statement by the Coalition's finance and communications spokesmen Andrew Robb and Malcolm Turnbull.
As well as the dashboard, the Coalition promised to trial an opt-in, secure digital inbox for communications from all levels of government to citizens, from next year and to require three government agencies from next year to trial cheap, new-wave telepresence systems such as browser-based Web Real-Time Communications.
The dashboard idea has been copied from the Obama administration in the US, which has had its service online since 2009.
To push government IT services online, the Coalition said it would ensure every government interaction that happened more than 50,000 times a year would be able to be carried out online by 2017. It would make the internet the default for interactions and create a digital service standard and digital design guide modelled on existing British systems.
From 2015, agencies would be forced to report on what proportion of their digital services aren't enabled for mobile devices.
The Coalition would keep Labor's National Digital Economy Strategy, launched in 2011, saying it would further develop the strategy in conjunction with states and territories.
Lots more here:
A plan like this should be adopted both at the State and Federal level. Think how we might have avoided the problems with the PCEHR, HealthSMART and the Qld Health Payroll Program.
Slightly at a tangent - but also in the Government IT Policy area I was pointed to this last week. A really visionary report from a UK think tank on long term Government digital futures.
Sadly with this bit of good news there is also a bad bit.

NICTA to lose $42m in Coalition cuts

FUNDING for research body National ICT Australia has been slashed as part of Coalition cuts before the federal election.
The Fiscal Budget Impact of Federal Coalition Policies released by opposition treasury spokesman Joe Hockey includes $42 million cuts by 2015-16 for discontinuing direct federal government funding to the ICT Centre of Excellence.
Given that NICTA bagged $185.50 from the Federal Government for 2011-15 at an average of $46.4 million per year, the cut is equivalent to an entire year's federal funding of the ICT research icon.

NICTA had obtained the funds just last month, which means it would have been funded for the 2015-16 financial year; the cut raises the question of whether the Coalition will offer NICTA financial support beyond June 2015, and if not, whether NICTA's days are numbered.
Lots more here:
Seems very odd to me.

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