The GovTech Summit

2022 |

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5 reasons why GovTech is more important than ever in 2022 

Soaring inflation, unprecedented price surges and falling living standards — the economic impacts of the Russian invasion of Ukraine continue to ripple out across the globe. This is a consequential moment for the international community. Governments worldwide are going to need all the help they can get. 

Best known for its cutting-edge digitalisation of public services in everything from remote healthcare services to tackling disinformation, GovTech brings a ‘startup ethos’ to solving the most pressing challenges that governments face. While GovTech isn’t the single solution to the crises that lie ahead, it is the engine of change required to chart the course forward. 

In 2021, the demands of the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated GovTech from a niche sector of digital government to a more mainstream pillar of government strategy. The innovative technology and solutions brought to the world stage have helped to address both longstanding and emerging public sector needs. Rising up to meet challenges is exactly what the sector represents. 

So today let’s remember, instead of endless warnings and prophecies of doom, action can and must be taken. GovTech can play a key role in ensuring a better future for us all. Here are five ways why GovTech is more important than ever in helping tackle the challenges we face.  

1. GovTech drives economic recovery

Even as inflation across parts of the world now sits at a 40-year high, GovTech presents one of the best catalysts for startup growth and innovation. Despite a gloomy backdrop, global investment in startups broke meteoric records in 2021. The global market of GovTech is now currently estimated to be around £372 billion. Startups, as seen during COVID-19, are quickest to recognise the old adage that ‘necessity is the mother of invention.’ 

More importantly, GovTech can prove a crucial variable in ushering in a period of longer-term economic stability and recovery. Technological innovation designed to replace outdated systems spurs supply chain efficiencies and productivity — all while lowering long-term costs, creating jobs, and stimulating the economy. 

Whilst governments are under immense pressure to cut spending, such innovation in the form of digital initiatives can lead to the reduction of the overall cost of many of our public services, proving the most powerful measure yet. 

2. GovTech optimises our energy 

As Russia wreaks havoc with Europe’s gas supply, the continent — along with the rest of the world – is staring down an alarming energy future. With no end of the conflict in sight, leaders are casting their net wide to contain economic shock and disruption. 

GovTech solutions can help governments in this critical moment. The advent of decentralisation, combined with digitalisation, can help create a marketplace for energy data to enable intelligent distribution of energy and investment. This direction can assist governments in optimising how millions of devices and citizens can be connected to the grid in an efficient and equitable manner. 

Denmark’s Energy Data Service is a prime example — a free and open data portal — capable of democratising access to energy data has helped to not only facilitate the green energy transition but also stimulate competition to keep energy prices affordable for citizens. 

3. GovTech enables a stronger state in the face of threats 

Ukraine’s fierce resistance against Russia’s aggression today is a testament to the digital-first government President Zelenskyy has steadily been putting in place since before the invasion. 

The government’s groundbreaking digital platform, Diia, hosts more than seventy modern, intuitive and user-friendly public services. The very definition of GovTech in action. A one-stop shop for citizens, Diia hosts digital identification documents such as passports and business registration records, issues payroll, benefits, and much more.  

The Diia app enabled the government to rapidly deploy new forms of support such as securing a stable income for refugees, saving lives and livelihoods in the country’s darkest hour. Soldiers now also depend on the Diia app to track Russian movements and update civilians at risk. 

Embracing the power of GovTech and innovation has not only proved a lifeline for Ukraine, it’s formed a core part of their strategy to remain resilient. 

4. GovTech empowers public servants 

The best GovTech startups recognise technology alone does not save the day. People do. Public servants across the board face a tsunami of obstacles in the post-pandemic world. 

Levelling up their skills and providing them with enhanced capability has been and will continue to be a critical part of the GovTech ecosystem’s mission. 

One such area which shows no signs of slowing is health. From Cera to Patchwork, a new wave of organisational tools for frontline workers are helping to enable greater speed and efficiency in delivering healthcare services despite workforce concerns and waiting times. 

5. GovTech restores trust in public institutions 

Over 50% of citizens in the world's major economies actively distrust government. An overwhelming majority of the British public (76%) do not trust that the UK government will make decisions that will improve their lives. Not only does GovTech have the ability to radically improve the public services we all use, but the principles behind its innovations can have a major positive impact on trust. 

This is largely due to the reason that at the heart of GovTech is the view that public services should be designed around citizens’ needs. As a result, most GovTech key players create digital public services that are accessible for everyone, joined up, responsive, seamless and transparent. 

Estonia, a leader in GovTech platforms, principles, and initiatives, has an 82% trust rating in the services they provide. If citizen trust in the underlying structures of public service delivery remains strong — a key foundation of GovTech — then weathering the storm of fragile party politics may prove easier. 

Shape Your GovTech Future 

Join us on 1st November at the GovTech Summit in The Hague to find out how to put GovTech front and centre of your crisis response and create a better future for all. 

















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