Australia ranks fifth in debut on OECD digital govt index

digital government

Australia has come in fifth spot on the 2023 Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Digital Government Index (DGI), in its first appearance on the index alongside 38 other participating nations.

The 2023 DGI results, analysed from January 2020 to October 2022, identified four key initiatives Australia excelled in, including:

  • Utilisation of digital solutions to streamline citizen engagement with government services;
  • Oversight and evaluation of digital projects to ensure real value is delivered;
  • Collaborative efforts in delivering a national strategy in service design; and
  • Strengthening of security and resilience of digital public infrastructure.

“Our debut in the top 5 of the 2023 Digital Government Index is an outstanding achievement that independently affirms Australia’s digital government capability,” Finance Minister, Katy Gallagher, said.

“Australia’s overall score was 75.3%, well ahead of the OECD average of 60.5%. This ranking was earned thanks to our strengths digital project evaluation, collaboration in development of strategies, and service design and delivery.”

With each nation studied against the OECD Digital Government Policy Framework to help them better understand their level of digital government “maturity”, Australia scored well in several areas, including:

  • Digital by design (97 per cent). Examining our willingness to use digital solutions to simplify engagement with citizens.
  • Data driven (77 per cent). Reviewed how effectively Australia establishes the governance, access, sharing and re-use of data for service delivery.
  • Acts as platform (74 per cent). Gauges access public servants have to digital solutions to effectively deliver crucial services.
  • User-driven (83 per cent). How effectively Australia places people’s needs and convenience at the centre of their service delivery.
  • Proactive (75 per cent). Investigates how well Australia pre-empts the needs of its citizens for rapid response.

The Digital Transformation Agency (DTA), the agency responsible for participating in the DGI survey process and coordinating contributions from over 12 departments and agencies towards Australia’s entry into the index, also identified several new and existing initiatives it plans to implement to continue the nation’s recognition in the DGI.

These strategies include:

  • the Data and Digital Government Strategy;
  • working across the APS to ensure compliance with the updated Digital Service Standard;
  • the exploration of responsible use of generative artificial intelligence within the public service;
  • curbing duplication and confusion in accessing digital services across the government’s ecosystem;
  • improving digital procurement at a whole-of-government level.

“These initiatives, plus many others, will contribute to Australia maintaining and improving Australia’s ranking come the next Digital Government Index,” Wayne Poels, the acting Chief Executive Officer of the Digital Transformation Agency (DTA), said.

“By aligning to the Strategy, its missions, and outcomes, the Australian Public Service will be well placed to drive up its score even closer to 100%.

“We will continue to work to improve Australia’s ranking come the next Digital Government Index which, ultimately, will underpin better outcomes for citizens and businesses.”