Scotland outperforming rest of UK on digital public services, report finds

Written by Liam Kirkaldy on 8 December 2020 in News
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Study commissioned by Scottish Government identifies areas of potential improvement to catch up to Nordic countries

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Scotland is performing above the European average in the move towards digital public services, but more work is needed on the “building blocks” of good digital government to catch up with Nordic countries, according to a new study.

The report, produced by consultancy Capgemini Invent and commissioned by the Scottish Government, found that Scotland scored 67% on key benchmarks for digital public services, compared to 54% for the UK as a whole and against 59% on average for the EU.

But while Scotland performed well, Nordic countries remain leaders in digital government, with Denmark scoring 10 percentage points higher than Scotland. 

The report compared eight major ‘life events’, such as starting a business, moving house and studying, concluding that Scottish entrepreneurs enjoy good digital public services, but many local services need improvement.


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Public finance minister Ben Macpherson said: “Scotland is working to become a digital leader in an interconnected world, and the coronavirus pandemic has made clearer than ever the importance of good digital public services. This report confirms that we’re already ahead of the game when it comes to digital public services and I want to make sure we build on that progress.”

He added: “We recognise the researchers’ recommendations for how we can improve further, and we are currently consulting on our draft digital strategy which contains plans to address many of these points. We will continue to work with other European countries to learn from their experiences and share our own.”

Jane Morrison-Ross, CEO of digital industry trade body ScotlandIS, said: “We live in a Scotland where digital underpins our most important public services to deliver a healthier, more environmentally conscious, wealthier and inclusive nation. This report recognises our progress, but there is more to do and the Scottish Government is already working towards these goals with partners. Together we can take the learnings from the report and continue to create a digital Scotland that is good for the people, the economy, the environment and the government.”

 

About the author

Liam Kirkaldy is Liam Kirkaldy is online editor at PublicTechnology sister publication Holyrood, where this story first appeared. He tweets as @HolyroodLiam.

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