What should digital public services in the EU be like? Brussels is looking for views on strategies and obstacles facing e-Government, and have launched a public consultation on this topic. Its outcomes are to be taken into account when the eGovernment Action Plan 2016-2020 is developed.
The consultation was launched in late October and will run until January 22nd. Among the points the survey covers, it is possible, for instance, to assess the importance of providing “one stop” digital public services, accessible via your smartphone or involving citizens in the development of services and apps (for example, a platform for residents to report problems occurring in their city).
The survey looks into eight key issues: a review of the current Action Plan 2011-2015, barriers which hamper the use of digital public services, how to improve e-Government services, cross-border service applications, bringing digital services up-to-date, the role the European Commission can play in this process , the nature of citizen and business involvement in the Action Plan 2016-2020 , and finally, what public policies are required in order to develop this kind of services."Once online, public services become faster, more efficient and save taxpayer's money. Public administrations are lagging behind the private sector in making the most of the digital revolution." said Günther Oettinger, the Commissioner for the Digital Economy and Society, in a press release.
An Action Plan which can pick up where the current one left off, is seen as an essential factor in creating a Digital Single Market. A mid-term assessment of the 2011-2015 Plan has already provided some pointers in this matter. It highlighted the need to focus efforts on open data, collaborative services, interoperability and re-use of Public Sector Information. It also recommended moving away from a five-year plan towards a more dynamic and flexible approach.