Malta has been reconfirmed as a leader in the delivery of e-Government services among 33 European countries (the 28 European Union Member States together with Iceland, Norway, Serbia, Switzerland and Turkey). These benchmark results were announced in the e-Government Benchmark Report 2015 issued earlier today by the European Commission.
The study, carried out by Capgemini, IDC, Sogeti and the Politecnico di Milano assesses four top-level indicators and compares the performance of e-Government among the countries studied. For the second year in a row, Malta has managed to maintain outstanding results by leading in all the top-level indicators and by ranking first in the overall results.
The first benchmark computed relates to User Centricity, which measures the online ‘availability’ and ‘usability’ of e-Government services. Online availability takes a close look at electronic channel for public services, whereas online usability evaluates the overall user experience by measuring usability (such as support, help and feedback), ease and speed of use. Malta ranked first on both counts as well as in the overall indicator, with a score of 95%, 22 percentage points higher than the EU average.
The second indicator relates to Transparency and examines the degree to which governments implement transparency about their own responsibilities and performance, the service delivery process, and the personal data involved. The EU average score on this benchmark is 51%. With a score of 97%, Malta clearly leads the pack.
The third indicator, relating to Cross Border Mobility, measures governments’ ability to provide continuous access to online public services when users are away from their home country. Again, Malta leads the classifications with an overall score of 88%, this being 37.5 percentage points higher than the EU average. Malta also leads the fourth indicator relating to Key Enablers, which evaluates the availability of numerous technical elements that are important for the delivery of e-Government services. Malta obtained an overall score of 97%, 47 percentage points higher than the EU average.
Such results reaffirm the Government of Malta’s commitment towards leadership in ICT. The Digital Malta Strategy, which builds on previous national e-Government policies, sets a path for ICT to make a significant contribution towards sustainable economic and productivity growth, as well as citizen empowerment.
Malta Information Technology Agency (MITA) Executive Chairman Tony Sultana confirmed that MITA is already addressing the recommendations highlighted in the European Commission reports on aspects beyond the benchmarking exercise. This includes an extensive revamp of existing Government websites to improve responsiveness and mobile rendering, in an endeavour to better accommodate an increasing number of users accessing the Internet from their mobile devices. It also includes the launching of an EU funded project with the aim of increasing the uptake of e-Government services and the provision of training to public officials.