Rashed Al Mansoori is the director general of the Abu Dhabi Systems and Information Centre (ADSIC). His responsibilities include providing overall operational and strategic leadership to ADSIC and overseeing the development of the e-Government program.
What’s the latest on the SDI initiative?
The Abu Dhabi Spatial Data Infrastructure (AD-SDI) is a key pillar of the broader Abu Dhabi government Services Modernisation program. Today, the Abu Dhabi government has succeeded in establishing the framework of policies, partnerships, standards, data,
procedures, technologies and the appropriate institutional capabilities necessary to support geographic information sharing and to optimize benefits across the emirate. It is upon the solid foundation of the AD-SDI that spatial or geographic information will optimally serve concerned decision makers in both the public and private sectors.
The master plan for the initiative has been updated and reflects an expected transition during the next year from finalizing the foundation of data standards and access to more cross-sector, interdisciplinary coordination and collaboration. All the participating members will be following their own road maps for the development of mature, enterprise GIS capabilities within their respective organizations, thus strengthening the technical foundation of the infrastructure.
Where are the opportunities and challenges in the marketplace?
Given that the e-Government concept in the Middle East started in the late ’90s, where other leading countries started their e-Government programs in the ’70s and ’80s, this presents an opportunity for new entrants to tap into a relatively nascent market with great prospects. However, the challenge shall remain the adaptation to local demand.
What’s the future for the e-Government?
Countries across the region have been looking to create greater efficiency and provide better public services. Abu Dhabi is no different in this regard, and has been placing information and communications technology at the heart of its strategy. The authorities have already reached a high level of maturity in their e-Government program as they look to benchmark themselves against international best practices. ADSIC will diligently advance the e-Government program delivering e-services in public administration to individuals, business and organizations, as well as support integration within the global information society, reducing the “digital divide” and empowering citizens and stakeholders in public services.