A different spin

They’ve added a civic spin to the planning for the annual Lac Carling Congress.

For the first time since the respected annual conference on electronic service delivery was launched in 1997, its steering committee has representatives from all three levels of government — including municipal.

Committee co-chairs are:

• Peter Bennett, manager of information systems with the City of Winnipeg;

• Greg Georgeff, corporate chief information officer with the Management Board of Cabinet for Ontario, and

• Paul Migus, Assistant Deputy Minister for Modernizing Service for Canadians with the federal government’s department of Human Resources and Skills Development.

The wider reach of the steering committee is meant to result in a stronger emphasis on municipal governments and their work on service transformation at this year’s Congress, May 16-18 at Saint-Saveur, Que.

The theme of the Congress – Working Together to Transform Public Services & Their Delivery – directly addresses the transformation themes that have characterized recent conferences.

Dubbed LC8, the conference will once again include a political panel to explore issues around the political management of ESD. The main issues to be revisited, however, are still in the area of privacy and security — identification, authentication and authorization.

New content is expected to be heavily flavored by lessons learned in assorted ESD projects. It will include an emerging project sponsored by both the Public Sector CIO Council (PSCIOC) and the Public Sector Service Delivery Council (PSSDC). A research update is also planned to respond to priorities identified by participants in last year’s Congress.

The agenda for the 150-odd participants in this year’s meeting was effectively set by deliberations over the past three years. In 2001, for example, LC5 generated 126 recommendations which were eventually grouped by the PSCIOC and the PSSDC into five priority areas:

• Information management framework and practices

• Measurement

• Interjurisdictional business solutions

• Fostering interjurisdictional collaboration

• Privacy and security

A year later, LC6 identified four areas for action — research, measurement, trusted registration and authentication and dialogue. The PSCIOC and PSSDC responded by further refining those theme areas:

• Research – Privacy and information security

– Multi-channel service delivery

– Business First survey

– E-democracy and citizen engagement

• Measurement

– Assessment of initiatives to measure ROI in a public sector context;

– Establishment of a community of practice;

– Undertake additional baseline research segmented by user profiles and the nature of interaction; and,

– Expand and market a repository of measurement surveys, approaches and tools throughout the public service.

• Trusted Registration and Authentication

– With the Lac Carling forum specifically calling for a strategy on registration and accreditation, the PSSD/PSCIOC group identified several key strategic issues, to be addressed by Ontario and the federal government:

– the development of cross-jurisdictional procedures;

– the use of third-party registration

– the required policies and procedures; and,

– potential private sector involvement

• Political and Private Sector Panels

– the Councils agreed that the continued involvement and participation of both the political and private sector interests was critical.

The pragmatic nature of much of the discussion at LC6 was reflected in the theme at LC7, last year — moving service delivery forward: The practical and the tactical.The PSCIOC and PSSDC responded by:

• Calling for more political engagement on the e-government agenda and issues such as service transformation, service improvement and integrated service delivery;

• Creating a multi-jurisdictional working group around identification, authentication and authorization, to develop common terminology and pursue a proof-of-concept of the two lower levels of the “trust Chain.”

• Confirming the role of the private sector in advancing the e-government agenda. With that in mind, the Councils agreed to work on several fronts around public-private sector collaboration, particularly public sector procurement and the management of large projects.

The Councils also identified a series of priority projects or initiatives, including:

• The Institute of Citizen Centred Service: This project is to develop a long-term strategy to sustain the institute and ensure high quality research.

• eContact: This initiative is to provide seamless online information to direct citizens, from anywhere in Canada, to the appropriate “contact” for the service or program they require.

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