Integrated Information and Communication Technology
The VISON 2030 Jamaica – National Development Plan identifies the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) sector as playing a central role in the transformation of Jamaica in becoming a prosperous country. ICT is an enabler for social and economic growth. One of the causes of the relatively low efficiency of the Jamaican public sector is underutilisation of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT), and silo operations resulting in high transactional costs and the absence of economies of scale. The United Nations e-Government Survey 2012 places Jamaica in the 108th position (out of 193) just above Cuba and Haiti in the Caribbean Region. In the Online Service Component of this index, Jamaica scored 0.31 out of 1, below the 0.46 average for the Americas. This score indicates a relatively low automation of public services and suggests that the Jamaican public sector still predominantly operates with paper documents and files.
The programme activities were designed with the mandate of ‘what needs to be in place’ in order to achieve harmonised ICT infrastructure and systems across the GOJ. Many of the GOJ MDAs operate as ‘quasi-independent silos’ with many having individual technological systems that are unable to harmonise with other MDAs. This reduces efficiency and effectiveness and oftentimes creates barriers.
Technology will be used to create a seamless interface within Government and with Government and its citizens. There is the need for a holistic framework to guide the public sector’s responsiveness to the needs of citizens through purposeful application of appropriate ICT solutions geared towards reducing unnecessary bureaucracy, driving efficiencies and improving service delivery.
The robustness and security of the information management platform will be important to the effective operation of Government. Focus must be placed on establishing the proper architecture and governance systems, in addition to the use of agile and flexible technologies that are reliable, cost effective, scalable and interoperable.
This focus area will implement activities aimed at: (i) Strengthening the government’s capacity to lead and implement ICT policy with the Appointment of a CIO and implementation of a Framework for ICT Governance (ii)Implementation of a Data and Information Sharing Policy to removal of burdensome legal, financial and technological restrictions placed on Government entities to access datasets collected and maintained by other Government entities (iii) Development of a GOJ Records and Information Management (RIM) Programme to develop an Integrated Records and Information Management Policy for the GoJ and provide necessary digitising capacity to Jamaica Archives and Records Department (JARD) to ensure that record and information collected, is stored and managed in a consistent manner across the public sector to enhance accessibility of Government data and information for efficient service delivery. (iv) implementation of a National Identification System (NIDS) provide a comprehensive and secure structure to capture and store personal identity (civil and biometric) information of individuals who reside and work in the island which will become the primary source for identity assurance and provide a process to improve governance and management in the delivery of, social, economic and security programmes (v) Implementation of GovNET a government wide communications network for the seamless transfer of information between government agencies and other stakeholders as well as for the provision of on-line services to the public at minimal cost.
Read more on the list of projects below: