West Macedonia Region(WMR) has a unique opportunity to design and implement radical reforms at multiple levels. This is the fundamental idea that underpins the rationale and the associate actions of the strategic plan for open e-government regarding the 2015-2019 period. The ultimate goal is to pursue open and e-government reforms with a tangible impact that will progressively enable changes in the operation of the West Macedonia’s Region. It is anticipated that the current sweeping changes in the field of open electronic government will eventually improve the public perception of WMR as a living organisation for all the different actors who interact directly or indirectly with the regional govrnment i.e. its employees, citizens , companies, visitors and tourists.
The overall vision for the Region of Western Macedonia is to transform it self into a transparent and effective organisation with institutions and services that empower its workforce, the citizens, and the private sector by responding to their needs and aspirations.
The strategic plan includes eight actions for the period 2015-2019. Each action follows the same structure and comprises: a) a short description of the current status for the relevant policy area, b) a brief presentation of the proposed reform and its goals, c) a short list with concrete milestones, d) a short list with the competent authorities to implement the milestones.
The goal of open e-deliberation is the establishment of a consistent systematic engagement, with a step by step approach, of citizens and civil society in the policy making process via an online deliberation platform.
The goal of this action is the expansion of official email use as an effective measure to reduce the amount of printed documents. Electronic exchange of documents will also accelerate in terms of time and quality both the intra organisational cooperation of the Regions agencies and its communication with external entities of any kind.
The goal of this action is to tackle the complete lack of e-government services in the websites of WMR. During the implementation of this action, the Region will put in place a viable and sustainable roadmap to simplify and digitize electronic services for citizens, private and public sector.
Transparency and real time accountability are the goals of this action. The means to achieve it are the constant online availability of open public data sets, the online availability of job description and full contact details for public employees, the live streaming coverage of various institutional meetings and the social media presence of the Region.
The overall goal of this action is to stimulate social innovation that contributes to local growth. Crowdsourcing activities publicly available in the website will enable people and organisations to collectively form ideas and proposals. Special calls of interest, such as the redesign of certain public services via hackathons, editathons etc will be available online at a regular basis.
This project’s goal is to help citizens to comprehend in a transparent manner the bunch of processes and the data that make up the annual budget of the Region in order to facilitate meaningful public participation in some specific aspects of resources allocation.
The Regions ombudsman is an independent agency responsible for addressing complaints from citizens and company owners. The goal of this action is to set up an online platform with tools that enhance the ombudsman in fulfilling her/his institutional role while also enabling citizens to easily submit their complaints and access the responses in a timely fashion.
The goal of this action is the development of smart infrastructures as a means for the WMR to acquire know how about private cloud technologies. It will therefore enable the Region as a whole to reach an optimum level of infrastructure utilization which in turn will result in reduced costs and economies of scale.
All the aforementioned actions of the strategic plan will be monitored via periodical reviews that aim to establish a culture of constant optimization and improvement by taking in to account results of interaction with the wider community of stakeholders regarding issues of open government reforms.
This project is being implemented by the open government task force of the regional government of Western Macedonia in cooperation with the opengov research unit of ICCS and the working groups of GFOSS for OpenGov and OpenData.