WITFOR 2009 arrow Commissions arrow E-Government Commission arrow Parallel Sessions: Details
E-Government Commission



Wednesday 26 August 2009

14.00 – 15.30

Parallel sessions 1: National Security and Strategic IT Decision-Making

Theme:  Decisions on which IT solutions to adopt, which vendors to work with, what should be done only by government and where the free market should prevail have far reaching implications for citizens. In developing countries in particular there are  sovereignty and even survival issues as small states with limited resources work to stay part of global systems.  Does it make sense to develop national capability and encourage national participation in ensuring that national systems are not vulnerable to collapse as a result of wider geo-political considerations.  Does it make sense for countries to use regional cooperation as a buffer.  This session brings together speakers from Private Sector, Governement and Civil Society to discuss what works and what does not.

Session Chair:  Dorothy K. Gordon, Ghana


  1. Jon Maddog Hall – Linux International
  2. Nnenna Nwakanma -  Digital Solidarity Fund
  3. Jake E. Jennings – AT&T
  4. Ho Sy Loi – Government of Vietnam

Wednesday 26 August 2009

16.00 – 17.30

Parallel sessions 2: Content for E-Government – Digital Inclusion Strategies

Theme: Special challenges exist in developing countries when implementing G2C services.  Infrastructure, culture, gender, language are among the barriers to citizen take-up of services presented using channels that in more mature markets have come to be seen as the norm.  This panel will explore successful  design, development and roll-out of e-government services, assessing how partnership between civil society, private sector and Government can result in quality content and improve Government's ability to determine what citizens want.  The session will  explore how innovations in voice/audio/video technology make it possible to reach those previously marginalised due  to poor bandwidth, literacy and language barriers while opening up new issues in terms of privacy and protection of citizen data.

Session Chair:  Huy Nguyen, Vietnam


  1. Dao Kinh Kha –   Government of Vietnam

2.      Prof. I. Kushchu – Mobile Government

3.      Abhishek Singh –  Director, E-Government – DIT, Government of India

Thursday 27 August 2009

14.00 – 15.30

Parallel sessions 3: Capacity Building for E-Government

Theme: E-Government is seen as a major change management process, that few if any can say they master.   There is however a body of best practice that has emerged from the costly mistakes of the last part of the 20th Century.  This session explores various institutions are working to transmit that body of knowledge, where training is and is not a solution and what new markets can do to develop their own innovative solutions.

Session Chair: Abhishek Singh, India


1.      Dr. Hyuen-Suk Rhee – Director, UNAPCICT

2.      Dr. Arvo Ott – Director, Managing Director, Estonian E-Government Academy

3.      Dorothy Gordon, Director-General, Ghana- India Kofi Annan Centre of Excellence in ICT

Thursday 27 August 2009

16.00 – 17.30

Parallel sessions 4 : Public/Private Partnerships and E-Government Procurement

Theme: This panel brings a selection speakers from Government and the Private Sector to discuss if and how PPP can work in the context of e-Government procurement.  Among the topics to be discussed are inequalities in negotiating power, analysis of investment , capacity to manage the policy and legal framework and what constitutes e-readiness in this very sensitive area.  Public interest vs. Private profit?or is there a better way to partnership.

Session chair: Dorothy K. Gordon, Ghana


1.      Bharat Nanawati -Government of India

2.      Madhav Ragan – Director Government and Education IBM

3.      Yoni Mizrachi  -  ICT 4 Development specialist and E- Government Officer Foris Telecom




 Jake Jennings

Mr. Jennings will discuss how broadband is a necessary ingredient for all applications, education, health care, and sustainability.  Broadband investment, along with other information communications technologies are a critical “enabler” of economic and social growth. For example, in response to the current economic crisis, a number of Economies have included ICT investments in their Economic Stimulus packages, including the US which has allocated over $7 billion for broadband deployment in rural and underserved areas.  With respect to strategic IT decision-making, the speaker will discuss principles for ensuring efficient broadband deployment such as technology neutrality, open markets, and government transparency.  He will also provide anecdotes from around the world as examples of requirements for public partnerships for investment in infrastructure, competing infrastructures, and network disaster recovery. He will also describe what his company has been doing with respect to network disaster recovery, as well as private sector initiatives - those regulated or required by government.

Nnenna Nwakanma

As IT assumes center stage in government procurement, it becomes important to learn and apply strategies from the world of IT itself for the benefits of procurement on one hand, and economic returns on the other hand.


The presentation will seek to give an overview of IT procurement and its current position in global government budget; highlight a number of key IT procurement challenges; allow participants understand the basic tenets of open source; apply the principles of open source to the issues in IT procurement and recommend open source tools that contribute to citizen service delivery, good governance, e-governance and in particular, support transparent procurement processes.



We present our point of view and recommendation on the national strategy for e-Government development in Vietnam. Over the last few years, e-Government has been considered by the Vietnam government as one of the key factors for socio-economic development. If developed strategically e-Government can not only allow for administration reform and modernization within government agencies, but also offer collaborative and responsive services to the public. The strategy for e-Government development, therefore, should be designed to take into account the issues and impacts of the legislative foundation, definition of vision and goals, awareness and readiness of the society, human resources and ICT infrastructures, and consolidated plans. This presentation is to cover viewpoints, objectives, and directions of the national strategy for development of Vietnam’s e-Government toward 2015 and orientations toward 2020.


Jon 'Maddog' Hall

Mr. Hall will talk about how software is no longer a luxury, but a necessity in running a country. Just as a country is at peril if they depend on others for water, just as a country should not accept cheap food from other nations to the detriment of driving their own farmers out of business, so should a nation develop their own software industry.

Free Software allows a country to have the autonomy of being able to maintain their own computer systems and software, yet be able to  cooperate with others around the world so they do not have to do everything themselves. A perfect blend.




Prof. Kushchu -Mobile Government and mPowering Development
Mobile government refers to all efforts enhancing eGovernment via the use of mobile technologies. The contributions of mGovernment to eGovernment involve two major areas:  offering services to citizens and modernising the ways public sector organisations operate. While the mobile technologies are becoming so popular and influential in daily and business life, mobile government is offering distinctive benefits in serving the needs of those who are actually in need of accessing information and improving the quality of their lives. mGovernment in this respect becomes an essential part of ICT based development work by making it more effective to reach those living in remote areas, those who need better IT education, more income and those who are elderly and very young. In this talk, after introducing mGovernment and presenting successful examples, I will detail how mobile technologies used by public sector organisations can support social and economic development efforts. I will focus on two dimensions: (1) issues related to capacity building and (2) wider inclusion of citizens.


Government of India

Digital Content: The Soul of Indian eGovernance Program

The Government of India has committed to its citizens the state-of-the-art delivery of public services to all sections of the society at their doorsteps, alleviating poverty and improving the education, health, trade and investment by proliferation of ICT in all walks of governance. Given the IT prowess of India and the availability of domestic talent, a vibrant telecommunication industry with more than 350 million mobile phone subscribers, there is a huge potential of deploying ICT effectively to achieve these objectives.

With a National eGovernance Plan under implementation and having covered significant ground in creating core e-governance infrastructure across the country, the Government of India has now engaged itself in developing appropriate digital content and e-gov applications, for a diverse citizen profile with 22 official languages, wide variety of cultural and social patterns and diverse legacy governance practices prevalent in 35 States and Union Territories. With the advent of emerging technologies, new media applications and vibrant eco-system for business-to-citizen services the digital content and applications development scenario in India is very encouraging and settling fast for a logical direction. Slow but steady proliferation of community radio has also indicated its the promise for the traditionally oral Indian society, primarily located in hinterland of rural India. The presentation will depict a current scenario of digital content development and applications and the roles and responsibilities being played by different stakeholders, including the public sector.

Dinh Dao Kha

From PKI to the national electronic authentication framework for the e-government of Viet Nam


Law on Electronic Transactions passed in 2005 and the Decree on digital signatures and digital signature authentication issued in 2007 are important legislative documents that set the foundation for determining the validity of information in electronic messages. The adoption of these legislative documents shows efforts of Vietnam to become a digital economy integrated to the global economy of the region as well as of the world.


Since the adoption of these documents so far, many activities of the government and enterprise community have been conducted in order to deploy a public key infrastructure (PKI) that facilitating secure electronic transactions. In Vietnam, PKI is a new IT field. In order to effectively implement and apply PKI technologies, it is essential to address the critical success factors such as a complete legal framework, advanced cryptography technologies, good organization, skilled human resource and adequate investment in a holistic but flexible approach with an effort of the whole society.


In this speech on the theme "From PKI to the national electronic authentication framework for the e-government of Viet Nam", the speaker outlines the status of PKI implementation for serving the socio-economic development and addresses some critical factors of digital signature applications in Viet Nam. He also referrers to essential processes, procedures and regulatory documents issued by Ministry of Information and Communications as well as by other state agencies for deployment of digital signature authentication services. Based on this analysis, the speaker brings the issues for discussion about approaches to upgrade the current PKI system with advanced PKI services to extend its capacity and usability.


Finally, the speaker introduces the efforts to develop a national authentication framework and a corresponding electronic authentication infrastructure, in which PKI and other authentication technologies will be integrated together to create a comprehensive e-authentication mechanism to effectively facilitate electronic transactions. The outcome of these projects will contribute significantly to the progress of e-government development in Vietnam by enabling federated authentication services for public services provided by state agencies in the future e-government as well as for e-commerce activities.



Hyuen Suk Rhee

As e-government systems mature with expanded services, and as people’s expectations of the quality and efficiency of public service delivery grow, a new set of competencies is required for policymakers and project managers of e-government initiatives. Results of a recent survey on the status of e-government implementation, conducted by the United Nations Asian and
Pacific Training Centre for Information and Communication Technology for Development (APCICT) involving 13 countries in Asia and the Pacific, reveal that some form of e-government is present in all countries with strong endorsement from government at the highest level. Yet, e-government is still in an early stage in many countries and faces challenges of meeting the increasing demands of citizens to deliver better services and results.

Information and communication technology (ICT) human capacity is recognized as a critical requisite to successful e-government projects. ICT human capacity is required for the ‘supply side’ of e-government for policymakers, project managers and ICT professionals developing effective e-government applications. ICT human capacity is also required for the ‘demand side’ – essentially the users of e-government services. Citizens and businesses need to have the basic competencies to access and use the services offered through e-government tools.

The presenter will discuss the integrated approach APCICT has taken in ICT human capacity building towards expanding the scope and scale of e-government systems so that they are people-centred and inclusive, and contribute to socio-economic development. This integrated approach involves the design and delivery of its flagship training programme – the “Academy of ICT Essentials for Government Leaders,” the conduct of research on the development of common and internationally shareable e-Competency for e-Government (eCeG) standards, and the provision of advisory services to national partners in localizing eCeG standards and the Academy programme to
meet national training needs.

Arvo Ott

 e-Government capacity building – lessons learned


E-government has been already more then 10 years priority issue for many countries. Some countries made fast progress, some are not. The motivation aspects  to develop eGovernment, underlying frameworks, main misunderstandings, the methods of management of eGov development – these are important factors to take into account.


The presentation will focus on some of the important issues of eGovernment -  important for politicians, administration managers and IT managers of public sector. The experience gathered from eGovernment development process of Estonia has been one of the main information source used by eGovernance Academy. Also, regional and EU level best practice is very valuable when different development frameworks are analyzed. It is often lack of knowledge about – what is eGovernment? What are the main driving forces? What to do to reach the aims in eGov development? What are the risks and how to handle these? What are the models and frameworks?


 A brief  description of the methods and curricula, used by eGovernance Academy will be given. Just list few of the topics – policy aspects of eGovernment, action planning and management, organizational setup and roles of different payers in eGov development, legal and fiscal frameworks of eGov, ICT architecture and interoperability issues, main building blocs of eGov etc.  The advantages of adopting a regional approach will be discussed.


Dorothy Gordon


Capacity building for successful E-government, is difficult.  As with any major change management process work needs to proceed on many fronts with strong coordination and commitment. In developing country contexts, e-government is often a supply-driven phenomenon owned and executed by a small well-educated elite who can relate well to the imported technological solutions designed largely for markets with a completely different profile in terms of literacy, poverty, concentration of jobs and other critical concerns. When e-government projects are delivered this way capacity-building issues centre around the difficulty in moving from mastery of basic IT skills to an ability to manage highly complex large-scale deployment with little attention on how to deliver demand-driven responsive E-Government solutions that are pro-poor and inclusive of the traditionally marginalised.  This presentation discusses how to build capacity in this area so as to avoid a further marginalisation of vulnerable groups as a result of the deployment of 'standard' e-government solutions.



Dr. Yonathan Mizrachi

Comments on the delicate issue of Public-Private-Partnerships in ICT: Connecting Infrastructure with Skills and Content



Any attempt to define the notion of Public-Private-Partnership (PPP) will quickly reveal that it has no single, overarching, agreed upon definition. Defining the nature of PPP in ICT related projects is even more complicated. While PPP is an umbrella notion covering a wide range of economic activities and is in constant evolution, most Public Private Partnerships in both traditional and ICT sense are founded on the conviction that both the public sector and the private sector have certain advantages relative to the other in the performance of specific tasks. By allowing each sector to do what it does best, public services and infrastructure can be provided in the most economically efficient manner, private sector companies can grow their businesses, and the citizens can benefit from both. Application of PPP models in ICT is different from traditional PPP models, most notably so when it comes to the notion of “Build”. At the core of any “system building” activity of ICT solutions stands the injection of IP into software and hardware products in order to weave customized solutions to particular public-sector business processes in realms of G2G, G2C and G2B. Hence, the “life cycle” of such “built” customized information products is much shorter and intangible and when it comes to “transferring” an information system based project back to the ownership of the “public sector” the issue is much more dynamic and fluid. 


When it comes to various e-Gov and ICT-based projects, private players can provide the following value propositions as partners to the public sector: Improved service delivery, with the government focusing on its core functions and allowing the private sector to take responsibilities of performing non-core functions such as building and maintaining IT infrastructure; Investment in e-Government projects, especially in procurement of IT resources; Project management skills for managing e-Government projects; Knowledge of business, cost and revenue models; Reduced risk for the public sector (by transferring risk to the private partner); Customer focus and soft skills; Optimum utilization of government resources (the private sector considers it as a commercial opportunity and is motivated to use the resources fully); Faster delivery of projects; Better finance management and corporate governance practices; Entrepreneurship and innovation for making e-Government projects sustainable and successful. When it comes to developing nations, most of these value propositions are even of higher value.

The case study that will be presented is that of Foris Telecom (www.foristel.com), a global wireless broadband mobile WiMAX carrier and Internet Service Provider that is providing broadband access at dramatically reduced prices. Partnering with governments in emerging markets to foster their transition to information societies and knowledge economies, Foris Telecom wishes to become a leader in promoting digital inclusion in these regions.  Foris Telecom partners with local players to deploy and operate scalable, low cost, wireless data networks in emerging markets by establishing a customized, complete solution for connectivity, access, ICT skills and content. The Company holds triple play licenses in 15 countries mainly in Africa and Asia, covering some 300 million people. Foris Telecom believes that broadband, in its wireless form; will be the locomotive that will drive developing nations into the information economy in the decades to come.

Public-private-people partnerships (PPP) are the cornerstone to advancing the Foris Telecom Digital Inclusion strategy. Initiating, leading, and joining existing coalitions of public-private partnerships, the Company is working to supplement, enhance, and leverage its core affordable WiMAX connectivity offering with partners that specialize in supplying access (digital devices for end users), ICT skills, and relevant local content and applications. Accordingly, partnerships are being developed with corporations, governments and international agencies. In order to ensure long-term sustainability, these partnerships are built based on diverse business models such as the provision of hosting services as Information Service Provider (ISP) and revenue sharing and equity with localized content and application players and even public institutions.


Madhav Ragam – Director Government and Education, IBM Growth Markets Unit

Basically covering 3 main areas :

1.      e-Readiness of countries

2.      e-Government maturity and lessons learned

3.      Case for PPPs to flourish in eGovernment transformation

The past year has brought severe shocks to the economies and macroeconomic structures of countries around the world. In contrast to the last major crisis of a decade ago, however, global confidence in information and communications technology (ICT) and the virtues of digital development remains intact. After many years of rapid growth and demonstration of its tangible benefits, ICT is now accorded a “strategic” role in most economies. This prominence is bringing a greater level of scrutiny of technology infrastructure from various sections of society, as well as international organisations. E-readiness will advance, but governments should take care to ensure that their countries’ digital development proceeds in harmony with their social, economic and political objectives.

e-Government along with e-Readiness is at different levels of maturity across the world. While some are making good progress at the infrastructure and basic services, others are now focused on ICT-enabled business transformation. Countries clearly face some tough challenges ahead in areas such as data sharing, personalisation of services, balancing efficiency with inclusion, and the effective management of huge ICT-enabled
change programmes. However ICT can make a real difference, and we will be most successful in modernising public services when we reduce the over-focus on technology and embrace radical change that is both customer centred and outcome-based.

Once rare and limited to a handful of countries and infrastructure sectors, public-private-partnerships are emerging as one of the most important models governments use to close gaps that they have in infrastructure as well as e-Government gaps. By making the best use of the full range of delivery models that are available and continuing to innovate - learning from failure instead of retreating from it - Governments can maximise the likelihood of meeting their eGovernment objectives and take PPPs to the next stage of development.


Bharat Narawati



Historically Public - private partnership (PPP) has been defined to describes partnership   between public sector agencies controlled and run by Government   and private business venture to provide services to citizens. This partnership is funded and operated through a partnership of Government and one or more private sector companies. These schemes are sometimes referred to as PPP, P3 or P3.[1] Generically PPP may also take shape of long term contracts between a public contracting and private provider for delivery of specified outputs by typically combining investment and service provision.[2] In recent times PPP has made its presence felt in other areas of public domain besides the Infrastructure and social welfare fields with which it has been historically associated. There is now a very strong emerging trend, especially in the last decade, about the role PPP can play in Information Technology and its associated service domain of e- governance.

The association of IT and PPP happened in a natural way. It is widely known that Induction of Information Technology serves to increase accountability and improves efficiency and services. PPP rests on the same strong feature of service provision, service delivery and accountability. Government of India recognized this trend and formulated a National e-Governance Plan (NeGP) in May, 2006, which provided a policy endorsement for implementation of e- governance projects on PPP basis. The National e governance Plan of India consists of 27 Mission Mode Projects (MMPs) identified for different Central Line Ministries and Departments. To sustain these 27 MMPs, and to create the right governance and institutional mechanisms , the Department of information technology of Government of India has also decided to setup  core infrastructure, formulate key policies, standards and the legal framework for adoption, and to channelise private sector technical and financial resources into the National e-Governance efforts.  The 8 key components identified for implementation are as below,[3]

1.      Core Policies                                                      

2.      Core Infrastructure : State Wide Area Network, (SWAN),  and State Data Centres(SDCs)

3.      Support Infrastructure (CSCs, etc.)                    

4.      Technical Assistance to Line Ministries and Departments     

5.      R&D     

6.      Human Resource Development & Training including Capacity Building          

7.      Awareness & Assessment                                        


In the above policy framework, the Department for Information Technology of Government of India guides and promotes Project Development in  e- governance fields, both  with respect to Mission Mode Projects and core support and infrastructure projects, to develop alternative implementation models including possible PPP models. The Department is currently implementing two largest core infrastructure projects at Federal State level namely the Common Service Centres (CSCs or Tele Centres) for providing Broadband Connectivity for delivery of e- services to citizens living in rural India.  In the CSC programme nearly 50,000 Tele Centres have been rolled out on PPP basis. By the beginning of next year a total of hundred thousand such centers are planned to be operationlised. The SWAN programme is also implemented on PPP basis. The would enable connectivity upto 6000 administrative blocks in India.  The PPP approach in implementing CSCs has substantially brought down Government investment in the project.  To the extent that the actual revenue support is significantly lower than the estimates.  The SWAN programme, primarily aimed creating a network highway to  provide connectivity to 6000 blocks in the country is also bound to reap dividends of PPP .

While the Government of India itself is setting example by vigorously following the PPP philosophy in the e- infrastructure projects it is implementing, at the same time in the policy and consulting domain, it has also set up  an institute of excellence on PPP basis for furthering the cause of e- governance. One such endeavour of the Government is to set a National Institute for Smart Government[4]. The institute NISG has its origins in the recommendations of the National Task Force on IT and Software Development. Forged as a public-private partnership, NISG offers the orientation and efficiency of the private sector combined with the accountability of the public sector. NISG is helping the Government of India and State Governments realize the national e-governance vision. Over the years, NISG has grown in stature as a reliable advisory body for Central and State Governments as well as public sector undertakings. Having conceptualized projects of national importance and worked with State Governments to give shape to their e-governance vision, NISG has emerged as a leader and a centre of excellence in the area of e-governance. This is an excellent model and example of public and private domain coming together to realise a common goal and a vision.


[1] Wikipedia 

[2]  IIM Ahmedabad , India

[3] National e- Governance Plan, NeGP, Government of India May,2006, link www.mit.gov.in


[4] Details can be seen at www.nisg.org




Abdul Waheed Khan speaker
Abdul Waheed Kahn from UNESCO will be speaking at one of the plenary sessions.....




Post WITFOR events
There will be a post WITFOR event on free open source software. This event is specifically meant for WITFOR participants. For details and registratio....



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