The Public Sector CIO Convex (PSCC) conference, which took place in Putrajaya, Malaysia, between 5-6 October 2017, was attended by UNU-EGOV by its researcher Morten Meyerhoff Nielsen, who delivered a keynote presentation and acted as panellist. Research work related to UNU’s presence in Malaysia and ongoing research on IT investments and learning outcomes in the country’s educational sector is being conducted at the Operating Unit by researcher Ibrahim Rohman and Megat Tajuddin, a Government Fellow from Malaysia’s Public Works Department.
The conference is a platform for government agencies’ CIOs, strategic partners from industries, as well as local and international experts, to come together and explore digital transformation. The main theme of the 2017 edition was “Digital Transformation: Forging Public Sector Digital Future”, and main topics included citizen centric design, cybersecurity, Internet of Things, Big Data, AI, and cloud computing, among others.
PSCC 2017 was attended by close to 1,000 Malaysian civil servants and decision-makers working with IT and technology. Speakers and panellists from ten countries, representing the public and private sector, academia and international organisations, also attended. The event saw the official launch of the national government online service gateway, the 2Gov*Net Global Network connecting all Malaysian Embassies and consulates, and the Big Open Wrangle initiative. Hackaton Awards were given for the open data and mobile apps.
The panel discussion, on 5 October, highlighted three things mandating government transformation: IT evolution, Disruption, and Innovation. Morten’s contribution focused on the following topics:
The panel was moderated by Ben Dornier, Director for OpenGov Asia ANZ division and included Suhazimah Binti Dzazali (Deputy Director General, Malaysian Administrative Modernisation and Management Planning Unit), Ahmed Aly Shaban (Senior Consultant, UAE Prime Minister’s Office), and Tan Kuan Thye (Strategy Marketing Director, Huawai’s South Pacific Region).
During the keynote on 6 October, Morten focused on technology-driven economic change and raised questions such as: Are we facing a new “industrial revolution”? Will technology lead to more sustainable growth? Whether the hype is believed or not, technology as a transformational tool for innovation has not yet been utilised to its fullest. The transition from a largely industrial to a digital economy and society is associated with new forms of organisation and models to capture its potential. That said, the gig-economy and zero hour contracts are not new; rather, piece rate compensation and payment by result have existed for centuries to increase productivity. Shared services have many of the features of the cooperative movements in the 19th century. Similarly, rules will continue to apply on data protection and personal privacy.