Benchmarking the Digitisation of Public Services in Europe

To what extent are information and communications technologies (ICT) being used to transform the public sector? This is the premise behind the European Commission’s eGovernment benchmark assessment carried out by Capgemini, RAND Europe, IDC, DTI and Sogeti.

The benchmark uses a comprehensive ranking system to identify those European countries that have implemented the most mature, transactional eGovernment services. It has been in place since 2001 and currently assesses the EU27, Norway, Iceland, Switzerland, Turkey and Croatia. All levels of government — from national to local — are taken into account and more than 14,000 websites are examined each year.

The European Commission's benchmark is unique for several reasons:

  1. It is a truly collaborative benchmark, designed and approved by both the European Commission and representatives of participating country governments. Participants meet and network regularly to ensure that the benchmark remains a globally recognized flagship project.
  2. The benchmark generates a wealth of hard, quantitative data every year. This statistically robust database is the key differentiator of the benchmark, with qualitative insights and case studies completing the picture.
  3. The benchmark is fully transparent. In particular, results are communicated to each participant in highly individualized components. This means that the benchmark does not stop at the headline level but clearly articulates strengths and weaknesses so that they are actionable for governments.

The ultimate objective of the European Commission's eGovernment benchmarking is to encourage excellence in government performance. The continuous collaboration of country representatives and the European Commission has created an atmosphere of friendly competition, shared learning and benchmarked action amongst participants. Those that have yet to take advantage of the tremendous power of ICT are being inspired to shape their future strategic direction, while leading countries are offered the opportunity to showcase best practices and share knowledge.

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