Minister Matthews Commits to Continuing Digital Government Conversation

Minister Deb Matthews speaks with ITAC CEO Karna Gupta during the IYAC Ontario annual reception

Deputy Premier  Deb Matthews speaks with ITAC CEO Karna Gupta during the ITAC Ontario annual reception Feb. 5

The Ontario government is committed to modernizing government services using technology, but its approach will be cautious, and it will only move forward based on evidence-based outcomes, says Ontario’s Deputy Premier.
Deb Matthews, who also heads the Treasury Board, told 200 ITAC members attending the association’s Ontario annual meeting that the government understands the transformative power of technology and potential of service efficiencies that accompany digital government. This government , she said, wants to deliver on them.
“But we measure everything now. We want to make sure we are doing the right thing in the right way,” she said.
With the pace of technological innovation at an unprecedented level, she said increasing mobility options, the cloud and big data are forcing governments to change in unprecedented ways.
Technology is a key enabler in the efficient delivery of government services that she suggested could range from the online issuing of birth certificates to the creation of a mobile app allowing students to keep track of their government loans.
“People have new expectations of government. The want services that are paperless, secure and available 24 hours a day,” she said. “We are watching the ways other governments are tacking these challenges, but we are also watching industry.”
The government relies on ideas and lessons the ICT community can bring to the table and she said it is committed to “keeping the conversation going.”
She praised ITAC for its ability to mediate the conversation and its ongoing efforts to put the appropriate government and industry players together in ways that ensure progress.
“We value the relationship and we are committed to it.”
The government has already saved millions rationalizing its IT applications and mobile support environment. As the government continues “cleaning the closet” and reviews all its programs to ensure their value, she insisted there would be more opportunities for the government to embrace technological innovation.