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October 14, 2017
Government in an era of digital disruption
By: Carl Ward

We are facing an unprecedented era of change, with multiple waves of technology enabling new business models and disrupting the very fabric of our economies and societies.

Change creates both massive opportunity and risk. Opportunity to grow economic and social prosperity at an unprecedented pace. We could eliminate tedious and dangerous jobs, reduce accidents and extend healthy lives, live happier and more fulfilling lives. Disruption is inevitable and we must embrace change to survive—yet we still need to protect those who are impacted by change. We cannot know the detail impact of disruption—change is happening fast and furiously—but we can at least anticipate and plan for change.

Government has a special role to play in governing disruption—both to protect our societies and support people and business through disruption; and to encourage and embrace innovation as a way to improve our economy and society. Yet governments have been slow to consider and govern the challenges—innovation is racing beyond our boundaries to manage, and traditional governance structures and policy ideas are not sufficient to create an adaptive and future proof society.

There are parallels between the evolution of industrial infrastructure—railways, roads and power—with the evolution of digital infrastructure. In most cases government took an active role in either funding or sponsoring industrial infrastructure. To date, governments have largely focused on the physical networks to enable digital innovation—but this misses the broader digital infrastructure necessary to support future innovation.

How should government embrace innovation and guide our future? With a traditional focus on managing policy, how do we create the right environment in government to think about the future?

Learn more about how the public sector is embracing emerging technologies here.

In the meantime, please leave your comments, thoughts and suggestions at the bottom of this blog, and follow me on LinkedIn and Twitter.

Carl is a thought leader for innovation in Health and Government, covering how new technologies and business models can enable a brighter future.

See this post on LinkedIn: Government in an era of digital disruption

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