Gartner, Inc. has announced the winners of the 2020 Gartner Eye on Innovation Award for government. The award recognizes innovative use of data and emerging technologies to tangibly advance the progress of digital government and highlights noteworthy public sector initiatives. Award winners were selected by a poll of government organizations around the world.
Government Technology Agency of Singapore: Launched in March 2020, the agency’s TraceTogether program was the first nationwide Bluetooth contact-tracing solution. It was developed in-house by engineers and rolled out for nationwide use within eight weeks. It was also made open source for other countries to adopt. The solution comprises of an app, as well as a physical token for less tech-savvy demographics. It records encounters between users in an anonymized fashion, to quickly identify users who have close contact with a COVID-19 case and establish links between clusters. The voluntary app has more than three million downloads with over 860,000 tokens collected to-date, accounting for over 50% of the population. The use of digital contact tracing has enabled the government to go from taking two to three days to do activity mapping for a patient, to issuing a quarantine order within one day.
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: The department launched the HHS Protect solution in April 2020, which is a secure data and ecosystem platform powered by eight commercial technologies for sharing, parsing, housing and accessing COVID-19-related data. It consolidates over 200 disparate data sources into one ecosystem that integrates data across federal, state and local governments, as well as the healthcare industry, enabling the U.S. government to harness the full power of data for COVID-19 response. The department established a fully functioning system in five days and accumulated more than four billion data elements in less than 100 days.
Försäkringskassan Sweden: The Swedish social insurance agency launched its Response to COVID-19 project in April 2020, leveraging automation to quickly deliver critical social services and benefits payments to citizens. A new and automated process provides additional financial support to employees who need to take sick days from their jobs. Försäkringsassan had previously invested in large-scale legacy modernization and implemented an agile working practice, which enabled the agency to assemble a new DevOps team dedicated to rapidly developing a solution and launching it to the public in under five weeks. To date, one million applications have been processed.
The regional finalists, selected by a team of Gartner analysts from a global pool of submissions, are:
Department of Health, New Taipei City Government (Taiwan) – The department established the Intelligent Food Safety Monitoring Centre (IFSMC) in March 2020 to prevent the occurrence of food poisoning from school lunches for 920,000 children on campus in New Taipei City. The IFSMC monitors the time and internal cooking temperatures of group meal suppliers using IoT technology. The suppliers also use Bluetooth temperature measurement equipment with IoT devices to upload temperature data to the cloud, so IFSMC staff can receive timely temperature information remotely, reducing the need for onsite inspections. Since March, the incidence of suspected food poisoning on campus has significantly decreased by 70 percent on average compared to the previous two years.
Department of Statistics, Ministry of the Interior, Republic of China (Taiwan): The department launched The Aged Dwelling Plan in July 2019 to determine who from Taiwan’s 3.5 million elderly population needs support from the government, even where they have not actively applied. The department developed an analysis model that collects and analyzes building and household registration, real estate, disability, income, long-term care and other data from different ministries, to determine the top one percent of the most vulnerable elders who may need help. During a trial, each identified person was visited to proactively offer government assistance if required. As a result, the ratio of people needing additional care that were identified through the statistical model is 66.7 percent, which is a significant increase on the 22.8% identified without the model.
Information Technology, Electronics & Communications Department, Government of Telangana (India): The department launched a blockchain-based Property Registration Management System (PRMS) in October 2019, to establish transparency and synchronization of data across multiple departments involved in property registrations. It was developed by integrating blockchain into the workflow of an existing property registration application, rather than developing from scratch to safeguard legal concerns and user experience. It addresses issues related to double selling, fake registration documents and insider attacks. It establishes trust by providing tamper proof property records, assurance on title ownership and reliable encumbrance/link document search. It also flags any mismatch in title ownership details during early stage of registration. Multiple stakeholders may use the PRMS as single source of truth for the property details and it can be easily integrated with third party applications.
Companhia de Desenvolvimento e Ação Regional (Bahia, Brazil): The department launched a purchasing platform called the SOL Online Bidding Solution in September 2019, to enable organizations that benefit from the Bahia Proditiva (BA) and Government Citizen (RN) Projects to make bids for the purchase or contracting of goods, services and works more safely. Suppliers from all over the country can also send their proposals and follow the result of the bids. The platform uses an open source model and blockchain technology to ensure full integrity, transparency and auditability to the bidding process. To date, almost 1,500 bids have been made through the app.
United Nations Joint Staff Pension Fund (UNJSPF): The fund launched a Digital Certificate of Entitlement solution in January 2020, using biometrics, blockchain, geo-location and mobile, to certify beneficiaries ongoing entitlement and current residency. The reliable and consistent processing of the United Nations pension benefit payments requires an annual verification of over 70,000 beneficiaries located in more than 190 countries. This project ends over 70 years of a manual, paper-based process. Digital identity and blockchain technologies automate the certificate of entitlement process with secure mechanisms that create traceable, immutable and independently auditable evidence. UNJSPF conservatively estimates the new Digital Certificate of Entitlement solution will be adopted by 50 percent of its users.
Vlaamse Dienst voor Arbeidsbemiddeling en Beroepsopleiding Beroepsopleiding (Flanders, Belgium):
The agency launched the Jobbereik (Jobreach) project in July 2019 with the service moving to public beta in September 2020. It enables every citizen to use digital self-service to identify suitable jobs. From their resume, the system automatically deduces skills, competences and experience, presenting suitable jobs. A combination of natural language processing, deep learning and graph databases and associated algorithms is used to analyze over two million job vacancies to identify the current skills trends and needs in the market. The result is a list of possible jobs sorted by skills gap.
Department of Culture and Tourism (Abu Dhabi, UAE): The department’s Unified Data Platform was launched in February 2020 to break through institutional silos, improve data quality and deliver new data insights for the culture and tourism sectors. It establishes a single source of truth for more than 100 internal and external sources of data that come into the department through various channels. A hybrid cloud data warehouse and automated data processing bring new insights via easy to use self-service modules. The platform enables a 360-degree view of visitors to Abu Dhabi, with advanced analytics able to predict visitors, hotel occupancy, seasonal variations, the impact on the economy, and more.
Award submissions were assessed using a robust and dynamic framework to ensure that the assessment process is pertinent and objective. The Gartner Awards Framework (GAF) is used as a structured model of assessment that enables participating organizations to be benchmarked against world-class performance standards. The GAF consists of specialized assessment modules pertaining to the evaluation criteria for each of the submissions. The criteria and subcriteria provide a robust set of requirements that are used as the methodology for benchmarking and learning among the participating organizations. For more information about these awards, please see FAQs here.
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