Eleven years after the meeting in Santiago de Chile- which would lead to the creation of the Network of e-Government Leaders of Latin America and the Caribbean (Red Gealc)-, the region reaps the fruits of more than a decade of journeying through the path of e-government, with significant progress yet notable disparities in levels of digital development among its countries.
While there is consensus on issues such as interoperability, the use of mobile devices, a citizen-centric orientation with focus on online participation, open data and the co-creation of policies and services, new challenges such as cloud computing, predictive government and crowd power have been introduced to the debate, thereby galvanizing public policy in this area.
In this context, the need for cooperation between countries not just remains current, but takes on added significance to enhance best practices and lessons learned. This, with the help of multilateral partners such as the Organization of American States (OAS) and the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) and the International Center for Development Research (IDRC) that have supported the Red Gealc from its inception, constitutes the next steps.
This 3rd Ministerial Meeting on E-Government/ 8th Meeting of the Network of e-Government Leaders of Latin America and the Caribbean (Red Gealc), with the incorporation of Spain and Portugal and the narrowing of ties with Korea, marks the expansion towards the Ibero-American space and the awareness of a globally acknowledge country experience with e-government, representing altogether a milestone towards the network’s expansion and openness to the world. In turn, the Cartagena meeting will act as a catalyst for network’s work within the next two years, renewing the LAC region’s commitment with the use of technology in the service of citizens.