Between September 15-19, a special mission was sent to Spain and the United Kingdom with the purpose of studying and documenting good practices involving e-government and innovation in the public sector. This mission was conducted with the support of the Knowledge and Learning Sector within the joint ICS-KNL program of Capability Development for Responsive, Citizen-centered Government. The mission delegates were Miguel Porrúa (e-government leading expert, IFD/ICS) and Pedro Farias (Lead Specialist in State Modernization, IFD/ICS).
ICS has maintained a working dialogue with the General Sub-Department of e-Administration Programs, Studies and Promotion (MHAP –Treasury and Public Administration Ministry- Spain), which -through the Bank- has started to share knowledge with some countries in the region which are receiving its support in e-government matters, such as Bolivia and the Dominican Republic. In addition, the government of Spain, through the Trade Department of the Ministry of Economy, has informed the Bank of its interest in including e-government among the development topics within a joint work agenda. On the other hand, ICS has supported the identification, consolidation, systematization and dissemination of knowledge regarding promotion of innovation in the public administration. In this respect, the United Kingdom has become an international point of reference based on its public policies and its initiatives geared towards strengthening the government’s ability to offer better solutions to citizens’ demands through innovation. A clear example of this is NESTA, which has become a case study around the world in the field of social innovation in public administration. Also prominent are the Gov.uk and data.gov.uk initiatives, globally recognized as a public service access portal and an open data publication platform, respectively.
In Spain, some of the mission’s activities included visits to authorities from the Ministry of Economy, the State Department of Public Administrations, the Spanish Tax Agency, the Secretariat of Telecommunications and the Information Society, and the new Chief Information Officer of the Government of Spain. In the United Kingdom, meetings were held with the Cabinet Office (Government Digital Services and Office of Open Data and Government Innovation), Better Regulation Executive, Institute for Government and Nesta. The meetings resulted in a very productive exchange of information, and enabled the identification of various cooperation opportunities for knowledge transfer for the benefit of LAC countries.