Cook Islands launches Digital Readiness Assessment process
March 20, 2023
Rarotonga, Cook Islands – The Government of the Cook Islands is now in the process of using the Digital Readiness Assessment (DRA) tool to gauge its digital strengths and weaknesses, as well as potential opportunities that exist in its digital space.
This comes after the tool was introduced to high-level policy and information and communication technologies (ICT) officials from across all key government sectors, private sector, non-government organisation (NGOs), community-based organisations (CSOs), and academia during the National Digital Transformation Strategy Stakeholder Workshop held in Rarotonga on February 28, 2023.
The workshop is a critical component of the Cook Islands’ digital transformation journey. It undertook a nation-wide survey to ensure that a consultative and gender-sensitive approach is adopted in mapping out the Cook Islands’ digital strengths and weaknesses across the five pillars of the Digital Transformation framework – Government, Infrastructure, Regulation, Business, and People.
“This is a great opportunity as we are establishing a platform for delivering on digital transformation and bridging the divide in the digital space. It also strengthens our capacity to deliver on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and underpins our 100-year Sustainable Development Agenda,” said Ben Ponia, Chief of Staff, Office of the Prime Minister, Cook Islands.
The DRA is a tool developed by UNDP to help governments take stock of their digital transformation pathway, and identify priorities and gaps across government, businesses, infrastructure, the regulatory environment, and human resources.
“UNDP believes it is critical to support the national digital transformation efforts of the Government, and that these efforts reflect the needs and aspirations of all. The recommendation from this Assessment aims to address the concerns of all regardless of whether you are in government, private sector, academia, or any other area,” said Jorn Sorensen, UNDP Resident Representative.
The functional analysis provided by the DRA will identify strategic entry points at accelerator fix points, bottlenecks, and gaps, that will in turn inform the development of a National Digital Transformation Strategy for the Cook Islands. This strategy will be a key enabler to building resilience in the economy and creating jobs, supporting the innovation ecosystem, and enhance the delivery of public services in the Cook Islands.
The goal is not just digital transformation, but inclusive digital transformation. This is key to building forward better from the pandemic and the evolution towards a more sustainable, effective economy and society, resilient to future shocks, whatever they may be. This will also ensure that no one is left behind in the digital transformation journey.
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