Artificial Intelligence technologies continue to expand horizons by combining the power of human creativity and technology. These technologies drive progress in society and help governments take a step closer to the citizens.
The survey launched by the United Nations in 2018 revealed that all of its 193 Member States have e-government systems in place with varying maturity levels, which help deliver digital services and citizen experiences.
Some of the most commonly used e-government services are utility payment, income tax submission, and new business registration. Denmark is revealed to rank first in e-government development, followed by Australia, the Republic of Korea, the United Kingdom, Sweden, Finland, Singapore, New Zealand, France then, Japan. The United States placed 11th.
What’s next for AI in the government?
It is said that the next phase of e-government will utilise AI to expand its automated and digitised services to deliver better experiences. Technologies such as analytics, blockchain, cloud computing, and the Internet of Things (IoT), are contributing to a more intelligent society.
However, despite AI having the capacity to create new possibilities, it also invokes the fear of job losses, mistrust, and the fear of a future dominated by machine-powered intelligence; hence, introducing AI needs to coincide with the right governance methods and ethics.
SAP was the first company from Europe that has established an AI ethics steering committee. This committee addresses concerns regarding privacy and safety.
Some governments explored AI in hopes that it will help improve service experience and citizen engagement. For example, The Ofice of State Revenue in Queensland, Australia was one of the world’s first government agencies to use data analytics, machine learning and AI in predicting tax frauds and payment irregularities.
One of the most advanced e-government systems can be found in Estonia. 99% of the entire public services is done digitally. Only major life events, such as weddings are done in person.
AI in meeting sustainability goals
City and federal governments also turn to intelligent tech to meet sustainability goals. Some cities boast its smart waste management systems characterised by sensor trash receptacles which trigger the city garbage truck fleet to service the area.
The key to successful integration boils down to creating a harmonious relationship between AI, good ethics and governance models.