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511A ten-country report by global management consultancy firm, Accenture, published on Tuesday, February 11, reveals that Singapore, Norway and the UAE rank first, second and third respectively, in their use of digital government – which provides public services using online portals, social media and new technology.

The UAE comes first in citizen satisfaction,with 80 per cent of the respondents in the country stating that the government is proactively addressing their priorities in health, employment and education.

The countries in the study include Brazil, Germany, India, Norway, Singapore, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, the UK and the US. The ranking was based on a cumulative score from one to ten based on three factors – citizen service delivery experience, service maturity and citizen satisfaction.

Of  the survey’s 5,000 respondents, spanning ten countries, 81 per cent says that they would like their governments to provide more services through digital channels and 64 per cent would like to use social media to engage with official entities.

Countries that scored high in the study have made a sustained investment in digital government. For example, Singapore will be one of the first countries to ensure that every citizen has an electronic health record. While in Norway, 78 per cent of its citizens believe that the government should consult with them in the design and delivery of public services, which indicates a highly engaged population.

“Citizen demand for digital services is even stronger in emerging markets, such as India, Brazil, Saudi Arabia and the UAE, where 80 per cent of citizens say they would like to communicate with their governments via social media and on their mobiles,” says Bernard Le Masson, managing director of health and public service management consulting at Accenture.

The second Government Summit, which took place from February 10 to 12, in Dubai, revolved around the theme of Smart governments. Several high-ranking officials from the Dubai Government shared the emirate’s vision for 2021, which features the entire city using Smart technology and, above all, its government.It was with this vision that His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, launched an online portal, MyGov, in October 2010, which is an all-encompassing channel for residents to communicate with all federal government entities in the UAE.

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