On the afternoon of September 29, 2021, the National Academy of Public Administration in partnership with the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the OECD Korea Policy Centre co-organized the international workshop “Public Governance of Digital Transformation – Digital Government Policy: International experience and implications for digital governance in Viet Nam”. The workshop organized in a hybrid mode including virtual participation and physical presence.
Attending the workshop, from the OECD side, were Ms. Elsa Pilichowski, Director for Public Governance, OECD; Mr. Hong-tack Chun, Executive Secretary, OECD Korea Policy Centre. From NAPA side were Dr. Dang Xuan Hoan, NAPA President, Dr. Nguyen Dang Que and Assoc. Prof. Dr. Luong Thanh Cuong, NAPA Vice President. The workshop attracted the participation of nearly a hundred domestic and international scholars, experts, managers, practitioners, and lecturers. There were seven presentations by OECD, Canadian, Korean, Colombian, Vietnamese experts. More than ninety papers were sent to the Organizing Committee of the Workshop, presenting various views and perspectives with rich information and diverse practices.
In the opening remarks, Ms. Elsa Pilichowski, Director for Public Governance, OECD expressed the delight to organize the workshop in partnership with NAPA and OECD KPC. She emphasized the great values of the event in terms of international cooperation and multilaterakism which makes countries learn each other and share experience in digital transformation and digital government development to serve the citizen and business’ needs. Elsa Pilichowski believes that, with ambition of being one of the leading countries for e-government and digital government in the global ranking of United Nations E-government Index, Vietnam’s Strategy for development of e-government and digital government for 2021-2015 is a good starting point to kick off policy decisions to deliver public values for citizens. OECD is eager to support and collaborate with the Government of Vietnam to pursue the digital government maturity.
In the opening remarks, Dr. Nguyen Dang Que, NAPA Vice President highlighted the significance of the workshop for the implementation of Vietnam’s 10-year socio-economic development strategy for the 2021-2030 period with the goal of “renovation of national governance towards modernity, especially development and social management”, “boosting the development of science and technology, innovation and digital transformation to create breakthroughs in productivity, quality, efficiency and competitiveness”. Dr. Nguyen Dang Que emphasized: “The workshop is held at a time when we are entering the digital era which brings about both opportunities and challenges. Faced with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, climate change, and resource depletion, promoting international cooperation and effective application of digital technology are some important solutions for countries, giving new impetus to economic growth and recovery; thereby ensuring sustainable, inclusive and comprehensive development. Moreover, promoting cooperation in the field of digitization contributes to building an environment of peace, stability, cooperation and development among nations and peoples around the world”. The workshop aims to create an opportunity to exchange domestic and international experiences in digital governance and digital government development, thereby proposing solutions to improve digital governance capacity in Vietnam. It also created a channel for Vietnamese lecturers, researchers and practitioners to discuss scientific issues to improve their capacity in research and working in an international environment.
Mr. Hong-Tack Chun, Executive Secretary, OECD Korea Policy Centre expressed gratitude to NAPA and OECD for tremendous support for this workshop and to Korean, Canadian and Colombian speakers , especially special thanks to the Canadian and Colombian experts for their participation in spite of huge time difference. He extended his appreciation to all the participants from Viet Nam. He believed that in the workshop scholars, experts, and practitioners share their the views and experience in the digital government, highlight the key themes, trends and current practices in the digital government issues, and learn the priorities and developments from other countries.
At the workshop, Ms. Barbara Ubaldi, Head of the Department of Open and Innovative Government, Office of Governance, OECD in France delivered the presentation: “Building a digitally competent and mature government: leveraging the OECD Digital Government Policy Framework”. The presentation clearly mentioned the increasingly complex socio-economic and environmental challenges and greater people’s expectations of the Government’s responsiveness to emerging and unexpected challenges. Digital government relies on an ecosystem comprised of government actors, NGOs, businesses, citizens’ organizations/associations, and individuals that support the production of and access to data, services and content through interactions with the government.
Digital government refers to the application of digital technology as an integral part of governments’ modernization strategies to create public values. Ms. Ubaldi introduced the OECD Digital Government Policy Framework consisting of six dimensions: digital by design, data-driven public sector, government as a platform, open by default, user-driven and proactiveness. She also shared the requisites for digital government maturity, including long-term efforts, changes in culture and working methods, application of technology to support solutions, effective combination of management, strategy, data and enablers, recognizing the importance of understanding and continuous learning.
In the comments on the OECD Digital Government Policy Framework” introduced by Ms. Barbara Ubaldi, Assoc.Prof.Dr. Luu Kiem Thanh, senior lecturer, former NAPA Vice President shared the expressions of the six dimensions of the OECD’s Digital Government Policy Framework in Vietnam and the current efforts and policy directions in building e-government towards digital government at both central and local levels.
Assoc.Prof.Dr. Hoang Huu Hanh, Director, International Training Center, Post and Telecommunications Institute of Technology, Ministry of Information and Communication delivered the presentation “Identifying enabling factors for digital transformation towards digital government development in Viet Nam”. The enablers are legal framework for a structured strategy, digital infrastructures towards cloud-based services, national data spaces for better decision-making, digital literacy for people, and synergy of initiatives for a more comprehensive intervention. He also highlighted the components of a legal framework for digital transformation, including: Law on digital transformation, artificial intelligence ethics; regulations on data linking and sharing; regulations on personal data protection/IP, digital assets; regulation in e-ID and authentication.
Mr. Mark Levene, Lead, Digital Government Partnerships, Office of the Chief Information Officer, the Government of Canada shared Canada’s experience in building digital government in the presentation “Canada’s Journey to Digital Government”. The Digital Operations Strategic Plan relies on the four pillars which is modernize legacy IT systems, Improved services, Implement enterprise, Transform the institution.
Ms. Lina Marcela Morales Moreno, Capacities and Digital Transformation Team, Sub-Directorate for Strengthening Public Digital Capacities, Ministry of Information Technologies and Communications, Colombia delivered the presentation: “Digital Government Talent and Skills” to share Colombia’s experience in building digital government, using Digital Government Index to measures public institutions performance in digital government. She emphasized the strategy for capacity building for digital government development and the challenge in enhancing the digital capacity of civil servants in building digital government at both central to local levels.
Mr. Sung Joo Son, Director, Digital Government Cooperation Division, Ministry of Interior and Safety, Korea introduced the Korean experience in the presentation “Digital Government Innovation of Korea”. He presented an overview of Korean digital government, Korea’s digital government Master plan to 2025 and highlighted ongoing and future innovations reflecting OECD digital government policy framework.
The workshop presentations of international experts provided theoretical issues and practices of e-government development, which are inputs for exchange and research on building e-government towards digital government in Vietnam, opportunities, challenges and possibilities of application of the OECD digital government policy framework in Vietnam to meet the requirements of the renovation, socio-economic development and international integration.
In the closing remarks, Dr. Nguyen Dang Que, NAPA Vice President affirmed that the workshop provided useful inputs for Vietnam in the journey to E-Government Development towards Digital Government in the 2021-2025 period and orientation to 2030. He extended sincere thanks to OECD, OECD Korea Policy Centre, international experts, and workshop participants for attending the workshop and contributing to the success of the event. NAPA Vice President also expressed the expectation to continue cooperation with the Korea OECD Policy Centre, OECD, and partners in Korea, Canada, and Colombia in building digital transformation and digital governance capacity for public leaders and managers.