The Integrated e-Government Program (i-Gov) integrates all the services provided by the Government of Qatar’s various agencies into one unified system. It is a single portal for citizens, residents, visitors and businesspeople to access government information, interactions and transaction services.
i-Gov is an ambitious program, but it has already made tremendous advances. ictQATAR has brought the government together, increased the efficiency and transparency of the government, and improved services to users.
By streamlining systems and with the use of creative information communications technology (ICT), i-Gov will increase the availability, accessibility, productivity and effectiveness of government.
The goals of i-Gov are:
- Increase the involvement of users in the provision of services.
- Assist with the cooperation between different government agencies.
- Improve the transparency of government processes.
In addition, i-Gov has established itself as integral to the national development of Qatar through the use of ICT to help realize the country’s ambitions. It enriches the quality of people’s lives through better government services, encouraging modernization and increasing economic efficiency. This is made possible by increasing the capabilities and efficiency of the government and private sector through better use of ICT and improved ICT resources as well as encouraging the creation of a knowledge-based society through the widespread use of ICT.
To provide overriding direction for the i-Gov programme, ictQATAR has identified two principal focuses to inform decisions and strategy at all times. Firstly, the program focuses on improving services to users. This focus has transformed attitudes within the government to a customer-first approach, which in turn has improved the quality and availability of services.
The second focus of the program has been on improving inter-government collaboration and it has been successful thanks to government shared infrastructure programs.
When fully implemented, i-Gov will make Qatar a world leader in the field of e-government service provision.
History of i-Gov
e-Government in Qatar was first launched in 2003. The planning process for i-Gov began three years later. Hukoomi was launched in 2008 and revamped in 2010, giving 24-hour access to all the government services and information that are needed to live and work in Qatar.
A challenge for i-Gov has been securing ICT talent to work on the project. There is a lack of local ICT skill within Qatar and its government, undermining the ambitious projects the state wishes to implement. This was solved by hiring international consultants and vendors. However, the potential to develop local capabilities is central to the social and economic development goals of Qatar as well as the sustainability of ICT program in the country. To address this, a program that aims to build up domestic ICT capabilities and entrepreneurship called Malomatia was launched.
A major ictQATAR achievement has been implementing interim solutions that enable the project to move forward while long-term final solutions are in progress. Throughout the development of i-Gov, ictQATAR has been introducing flexible and dynamic solutions that can be adapted to future changes in government and technology.
Extensive new infrastructure has been constructed to support the full integration of government service and to permit the effective operation of government ICT procedures. The following are examples of initiatives of shared government infrastructure projects:
- Government Network
- Government Data Center
- Government Contact Center
- Government Resources Planning
- Payment Platform
- Public Key Infrastructure
- Information Security Governance Project
These initiatives were launched to provide the back end required for the full functioning of Hukoomi and to transform the existing ICT infrastructure, networking and ICT and capabilities.
ictQATAR has developed an effective governance model for i-Gov involving the highest level of government and a broad range of stakeholders. This gives the program full political top-down and bottom-up support. This is achieved through the regular meeting of various levels of management committees, including:
- Sponsor Group
- i-Gov Steering Committee
- Program Management Committee
- Project Steering Committees
- Project Delivery Teams
- User Committees
Each government agency is responsible for verifying the information submitted to the web portal. It must also ensure that its web pages are updated and include all necessary information related to its services. Finally, it must ensure the implementation of the criteria put forward by ictQATAR.