GovTech Weekly News Wrap – 17 November, 2020

Weekly news wrap of government technology

NSW and SA Budget announcements see millions flow to digital projects; the Tasmanian Government announces a multi-million dollar health tech package; and the NSW Gov launches new ePlanning service.

  • As part of the state budget announced last Tuesday, the South Australian Government is set to establish a $120 million ‘Digital Restart Fund’ to boost the public sector’s digital standing over the next four years, with $24 million set aside for agile works.


  • The NSW Government has announced a $700 million commitment to digital initiatives – including enhancements to the state’s cybersecurity, NSW Courts and e-planning functions – as part of the state’s $1.6 billion Digital Restart Fund.


  • The Australian Digital Health Agency has released a new tender request seeking replacement gateway services for the My Health Record system, “providing a single point of access to the National Digital Health Ecosystem”. The work is among the first phases of the agency’s new National Infrastructure Modernisation program.



  • The Tasmanian Government has announced $23 million investment in a new health technology package hoped to modernise HR systems across the state. The funding will go to supporting the development of a 10-year digital health transformation plan.



  • The Department of Defence and the Office of National Intelligence (ONI) have commended Australia’s artificial intelligence community for its more than 200 submissions, providing insight into the emerging AI solutions for use in Defence and national security.



  • WA Health has delayed its $124 million deal with French IT provider Atos for one year to allow for a longer cloud transition, extending its contract with Fujistu by one year. The additional time will allow the safe transition of “ all clinical and corporate applications and servers from Fujitsu’s physical data centre to Atos’ cloud-based platform,” a spokesperson said.


  • The Australian Government will integrate its digital identity functionality within a new myGov beta platform by the end of the year. The platform was developed by Deloitte at a cost of $28 million.


  • A recent report has found Covid has accelerated demand for 5G, increasing the rollout of private 5G network. Meanwhile, The Australian Government has announced it will allocate high-band 5G spectrum in April 2021, said to provide “extremely fast, high-capacity internet services”, followed by the allocation of low band 5G spectrum set to be made available in the second half of 2021.


  • Delv, a Canberra-based digital services firm, has been handed an additional $4 million for its work on the COVIDSafe app. The Federal Government has reportedly paid out nearly $10 million to private contractors for the development of the contact tracing app.


  • The NSW Government has launched an ePlanning service providing “a simple and intuitive interface” for members of the public to analyse infrastructure data. Developed by NSW tech start-up Giraffe, the system will be progressive upgraded as more data from collaborating agencies is incorporated.


  • The Digital Transformation Agency (DTA) is set to revise its 2018 digital transformation strategy. Minister Stuart Robert said the agency would release a discussion paper over the coming days requesting public input into the strategy.


  • A new report has found that more than 3,000 data science jobs will be created in WA over the next decade. The Western Australian Government will commit $1 million over four years to establish the WA Data Science Innovation Hub.


  • The CSIRO has announced a new research program to help create new tech solutions for recycling plastic waste. Australians currently generate an estimated 67 million tonnes of waste each year.


  • The NSW Government has updated its Opal Travel app, giving travellers real-time passenger occupancy notifications to assist with safe social distancing.


  • CSIRO’s Data 61 is developing a high-tech pet collar with agtech partner, Ceres Tag. The collar will allow pet owners to track the location of their animal. Information will be collected using Bluetooth and satellite communications and sent from the pet collar to an app on the owner’s phone.


  • The NSW Government has launched a new research project that focuses on the gig economy. The next stage of the project will focus on improving health and safety for gig economy workers to combat a “lack of research” in this space.