IT Enabling Industry 4.0 for Government Entities
The combination of “cyber physical systems, the Internet of Things, cloud computing and scientific computing” promises unparalleled industrial and manufacturing productivity.
It takes many years for digital technology to mature in order to be more efficient than analog technologies. 3D printing becomes cheaper and does not require manufacturing subcontractors. Artificial intelligence chat bots replace call centered workers. Hotel and taxi revenue slides because people use more convenient “sharing economy” apps. Unskilled labor is replaced – at the same time as firms seek advanced skills.
Let’s have a brief look at the technologies that are converting traditional government practices to the ‘Government 4.0’
IoT for Government Entities
81% of cities are actively considering the potential of the Internet of Things. Imagine if a small sensor connected to your city’s infrastructure, roads, traffic lights, buildings is capturing data. Connecting and learning with this new information will help governments respond more quickly to challenges such as reducing energy use or helping first responders safely assess hazardous situations, traffic management and reduction of automobile pollution in roads with sensor data, weather information, public transport and car GPS devices, flood and earthquake detection, early warning to citizens, first detect respondents’ location, movement, and exposure to heat and hazardous materials.
The Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA), for example, began deploying sensors along the Colorado River in Texas decades ago to track stream levels that could cause flooding.
The LCRA was built to help Texas better manage floodplains in the lower reaches of the Colorado River, as well as generate and distribute hydropower to cities in the region.
Informing residents of the danger is also the goal of a new project in Los Angeles. The city has many facilities that are digitally interconnected and include 145,000 streetlights and 4,500 intersections.
The city and the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) developed a project called “Quick Alert”, which uses sensors to detect frequent earthquakes in the area. Today, this data is used to visualize earthquakes. To take it to the next level, the city is developing a system to send alerts to citizens’ smartphones so that they can be informed within 15 to 30 seconds. Not only can this application save lives but it can also save millions of dollars.
Big Data for Government Entities
The great strength of big data is that it has flexibility and universal application for many different industries. As with many other sectors, big data can have a huge impact on government. With so many complex issues on the table today, governments have to end their work in an effort to understand all of their information and make important decisions that affect millions. Not only that it is difficult to filter out all the information, but sometimes it is difficult to verify the veracity of the information. Any case of misinformation can have dire consequences.
By implementing big data platforms, governments can access a wide range of information critical to their day-to-day operations. Its positive effect is almost never ending. This is important because it not only allows the government to identify areas that need attention, but also provides them with real-time information.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) continuously collect data from the sea and land and space-based sensors. When you hear the weather forecast for an upcoming hurricane or tornado, the data starts connection with NOAA. The organization uses the Big Data Approach to collect and analyze large amounts of data to come up with accurate information.
The NSA derives its data processing capability from big data. It uses Accumulo, an open source project designed by the NSA and gives users the ability to store data across large tables to enhance easy access to information and increase security. When an agency collects data sets, it can use Accumulo to investigate various details while blocking access to information that may reveal personal information.
AI for Government Entities
AI has the potential for organizations to operate efficiently, manage costs, and make great strides in research.
Private companies are making incredible advances in AI. Everyone benefits from the AI offer, using what they have learnt to challenge the public sphere. Similarly, government is often the driver of some of the most important technological advances.
For example, Taxation offices in Australia are using chatbots and virtual assistants to respond to over 3 million conversations. These chatbots resolved around 88% of queries in the first try without any human support.
Another example is of Atlanta Fire Rescue Department (AFRD) of USA. The department used predictive analysis technology which accurately predicted 73% of fire incidents in building.
Cloud Computing for Government Entities
In today’s world, every business is trying to save money by adopting technological innovations, and the government is no different. Government agencies need to keep costs down while updating and protecting data. That’s why cloud computing is one of the best options available. Here are some other benefits that government agencies can reap by moving to the cloud.
Cloud computing gives government agencies more flexibility than traditional IT infrastructure. The issues related to the limitation of resources, managing hardware and servers, managing software updates and data vulnerability etc. have been vanished due to the use of cloud services. It has become more convenient to add new or change existing services without worrying about shifting hardware etc, thanks to the cloud!
For example, The State IT chiefs in California, Indiana and Arkansas said that the use of cloud and SaaS technologies helped than more than expected during times of covid-19.
In Indiana, CIO Tracy Barnes and her team supported 120 state agencies working from home, and the last investment in cloud-powered services helped make the transition possible. His department was piloting Office 365, setting the governance for the use of such tools before the pandemic attack.
Many countries have already implemented industry 4.0 models to redesign their operational and management policies and many other are joining the race one by one. With the passage of time, these advanced technologies are becoming more affordable and accessible giving birth to the chances for developing countries to evolve digitally. Let’s see what technology brings next!
On a lighter note, The only thing that comes to my mind when I think about the Government are those bohemian buildings occupied by these people when close to 25% of the population is homeless.