Government measures and innovative solutions to reduce the spread of coronavirus were discussed at the Global Web Forum on Governments’ agile response to COVID-19, which was held on May 14-15, 2020, at the initiative of the partner of the Astana Civil Service Hub – the State Agency for Public Service and Social Innovations under the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan.
The forum attracted significant attention from government agencies and international institutions. Representatives of 9 countries of Europe, Asia and Africa, as well as more than 20 international organizations took part in its work.
At the opening ceremony of the event, along with the Chairman of the State Agency for Public Service and Social Innovations under the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Mr. Ulvi Mehdiyev, UNDP Administrator Mr. Achim Steiner, President of the World Economic Forum Mr. Borge Brende, Chairman of the Steering Committee of the Astana Civil Service Hub Mr. Alikhan Baimenov made a welcoming speech.
In his welcoming speech, Mr. Achim Steiner noted that the current changes of unfolding crisis are bringing a different future for governments, the role of governments have been re-shaped and they have to rapidly response to the crisis caused by the pandemic, whereas joining efforts and cooperation are crucial.
In his speech, Mr. Alikhan Baimenov emphasized the importance of disseminating best practices and introduced the created Virtual Alliance of practitioners by the Astana Civil Service Hub, which accumulates scientific and innovative solutions of participating countries and partners to respond to COVID-19. He also stated that “trust is crucial for effective governance”. “We need to think about ensuring a balance between maintaining security and respecting the rights and freedoms of citizens. In this connection, retaining legitimacy, accountability and transparency should be at the core of the decision-making” – he concluded.
The forum subsequently continued in the format of sessions where the speakers voiced problems and challenges they faced with as well as presented solutions, which were implemented in order to prevent the spread of the virus and provide online public services.
One of the Forum’s sessions was devoted to social innovation and smart solutions to mobilize society during pandemic. One of the speakers was the Vice-Minister of Digital Development, Innovations and Aerospace Industry of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Mr. Ablaikhan Ospanov. He spoke about the role of digitalization in the fight against the coronavirus, the operational measures taken by the Ministry and IT companies, including more than 50 developed applications and best solutions in the field of education, health and public service delivery, focused on the convenience of citizens, reducing the risk of infection and protecting private data of citizens.
The LIVE stream recording of the Forum is available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xfUUj-F1leQ&t=2568s