‘Govt CIO or internet tsar would help deliver the digital economy’

15 Apr 2010

A strong CIO overseeing all State IT investment is needed, Data Electronics’ Maurice Mortell says.

Anyone can see how the internet economy is going to dominate the future of commerce. In many ways, it already does. Many of us cannot conceive of any other way of buying plane tickets, renewing car tax or booking a hotel room.

But it goes deeper than that. The digital economy should transcend all central government actions, from procurement to education, e-payments and information and services. The citizen’s interaction with the State from the cradle to the grave, should be electronically enabled, from registering birth certs to filing taxes.

The internet cloud represents a fantastic opportunity for the State to digitally serve our citizens, cost-effectively and efficiently. But the march of government and technology in Ireland has been a bumpy one. Disasters from the e-voting machine debacle to the controversial HSE Personnel, Payroll and Related Systems (PPARS) project, which began as a €9m SAP project in 1997 and went over budget to the tune of €195m by 2005.

Read more of ‘Govt CIO or internet tsar would help deliver the digital economy’ at Digital 21.

By John Kennedy

Photo: The future of government-to-citizen and business services will clearly be via the internet cloud. Proponents of the cloud-computing revolution in Ireland such as data centre provider Maurice Mortell (inset) of Data Electronics believe a State CIO is key to driving innovation and efficiency

www.digital21.ieDigital 21 is a campaign to highlight the imperative of creating an action programme to secure the digital infrastructure and services upon which the success of our economy depends.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years