by Divina Paredes

Gov’t takes steps to measure and prepare for NZ’s ‘digital future’

May 24, 2019
Artificial IntelligenceBig DataGovernment

With this plan, we are taking a groundbreaking approach to ensure New Zealand is ready to measure its digital futureGovernment Statistician Liz MacPherson

Government Statistician Liz MacPherson says the release of a digital nation domain plan is a step towards making sure that we’re collecting essential data to track and understand how new and emerging technologies are affecting New Zealand.

“Across the world, governments and international bodies are struggling to keep up with the pace of new developments in the digital sector.

“With this plan, we are taking a groundbreaking approach to ensure New Zealand is ready to measure its digital future,” says MacPherson.

“If we are to understand and respond to the impacts of New Zealand’s digital transformation, we need good data – and that’s what this plan is all about,” says McPherson.

“Specifically, we need to improve the way information on our digital industries is collected and co-ordinated, and we need to build a better knowledge of the way digital technologies are impacting the social, cultural and economic wellbeing of New Zealanders.”

The plan sets some strategic priorities for data relating to the digital domain and lists the following four key areas for action:

  • Digital inclusion

  • Defining and valuing the digital sector

  • Digital security

  • Digital technologies and their impact.

Paul Stocks, deputy chief executive, labour, science and enterprise, MBIE says the data captured will be used to inform future policy decisions and continued investment in New Zealand’s digital economy.

“Our society is becoming increasingly digitised, which leads to many new challenges and opportunities. These will require fresh thinking and innovative solutions from digitally literate and equipped Kiwis, and we must make sure that New Zealand remains digitally advanced.

“In the changing nature of work, it is fundamental that Kiwis have the skills to understand emerging technologies, and that businesses have access to the right people with the right skills and experience.

“To achieve these goals, we need to understand the value of our digital technology sector to our economy. We cannot do this without accurate measurement approaches,” says Stocks.

The domain plan was co-developed by Stats NZ and MBIE.

Throughout the development process, the project team gathered feedback from government and industry experts, to ensure that the best direction was taken.

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