Innovation first: new initiative by UNDP digitalizes Iraq’s public sector

August 3, 2021

Under the Digital Transformation and E-governance project - in Iraq-, Iraq’s Council of Ministers Secretariat (COMSEC) with the support of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Iraq and the Regional Hub in partnership with the implementing partner Estonia for e-Governance Academy, is launching a digital landscape assessment (DLA) to assess  Iraq’s digital maturity and foster a digital-first approach across key government institutions to better harness technology and innovation to deliver more and better results in the countries and communities in which we work.

Guided by the UNDP digital strategy’s  objectives - a call to action and innovation for UNDP and partners to better harness technology and innovation to deliver better results based on 2 concepts Digitization & Digitalization - the digital landscape assessment (DLA) will support Iraq assessing its digital landscape within the framework of the SDGs and identify digital entry points for acceleration towards the SDGs realization. It shall evaluate the current situation by reviewing existing digital strategies, action plans and regulatory frameworks. Throughout exploring the key enablers of digital government such as the political will, the role and coordination of the leading agency, the legal and financing framework , digital databases, access to services, and cyber security, the assessment will provide key short- and long-term recommendations in each area to strengthen and advance Iraq’s digital transformation in line with the SDGS targets, while tackling the digital divide and divers bottlnecks. The primary objective is to find new opportunities by harnessing the power of digital, to attain higher levels of prosperity and citizen satisfaction by providing public efficient, effective and transparent public services through the use of digital technologies

Building on the assessment upon its completion, a Public Sector Digital Transformation Roadmap is planned to be  developed to establish the baseline for Iraq’s digital governance, identify the strategic priorities for digital transformation in the public sector and outline the main building blocks of a digital society while tackling challenges and bottlenecks– e.g. secure data exchange, digital identity  and digital signature for citizens and businesses, data security and capacity development– along with proposals for the institutional, financial and legal framework of e-Governance. 

“On behalf of the Iraqi e-government national committee, it is my great pleasure to announce launching of the cooperation with UNDP Iraq. I believe that this cooperation will help the e-government national committee, Iraqi ministries, and different sectors to facilitate the achievement of our national e-government project.” says Dr. Abbas Al-Bakry, Head of Training, Development and International Support Team of the Supreme Committee for E-Government in the General Secretariat of the Council of Ministers.

For the people of Iraq, the advancement in digital transformation will lead to more citizen engagement and will offer reliable, optimized and seamless access to public services and consequently decrease the need for visiting public offices in person, It will also unleash e-participation through direct engagement between the government, citizens and business

Finally, increased efficiency and engagement, digitalization of the public sector will also result in greater government transparency and accountability. When automated and standardized processes are introduced, corrupt behavior will be limited.