The health, sciences and technology components of the federal government pose unique challenges in the architecture of Government On-Line architecture. These areas have been built on long-term relationships beyond the government purview and their electronic evolution requires unique positioning. In health, long-term partners have historically been provinces, followed by municipalities. In the sciences and technology, close relationships have generally involved the academic community and private industry.
When Government On-Line went into business in 1999, the long-term challenge was to seamlessly link the maze of federal, provincial and municipal online information and service programs. But while virtually all government information at all three levels, and a growing range of services are available online, GOL is really still in the early days of a journey.
At the U.S. Department of Agriculture, to cite one telling example, inspection findings and other data now are reported in a matter of seconds rather than days or weeks. Trends, potential problems and correlations are spotted quickly, enabling the agency to make more efficient use of time and resources.
John Riddle, the respected former CIO at Health Canada, called on participants in the Lac Carling Congress to consider Canada-wide agendas that address productivity, wealth development, U.S.-Canada relations and globalization.
Over the last seven years, a number of U.S. federal agencies and departments have been implementing a new standardized approach to outsourcing information technology. And now, over the course of the next year, the Government of Canada is considering a similar approach.