Civil service career: What I've done

Major projects for the Flemish e-government programme

Helping to formulate the long-term strategy
(2004-2008) for the Flemish e-government programme
at the request of the (previous) Flemish e-government team and the cabinet of the minister responsible for Economy, Foreign Policy and E-government, I was involved in formulating the long-term strategy for the Flemish e-government programme. This involved proactive research to identify global IT trends and specific technologies that could influence the planned Flemish e-government IT infrastructure, reviewing local and international best practices in e-government service delivery, close consultation with the different e-government clusters to identify and understand their technical and organisational needs, frequent informal contacts with citizen groups and professional organizations to find out which e-government services they are truly interested in, and participation in regular e-government meetings at the local, federal and European level (e.g. IDA and IDAbc). The long-term strategy had to tackle key issues like how to improve the e-government services uptake, how to integrate the present ad-hoc e-government organisational structure into the fabric of the Flemish administration, how to facilitate the business process re-engineering and change management required for effective e-government, etc. Major parts of this long-term e-government strategy have now been incorporated into the political coalition agreement "Vertrouwen geven, verantwoordelijkheid nemen" of the new Flemish government.
July 2003 till December 2004
Read also: presentation Vlaamse e-government strategie 2004-2008 [PDF 2.4 MB]
Helping to define the necessary IT architecture, standards
and guidelines & policies for the Flemish e-government back-office
at the request of the (previous) Flemish e-government team and the department Steering & Control ICT ("Sturing & Controle ICT", SCICT), responsible for the management and delivery of ICT services for the Ministry of Flanders, I was involved in defining the ICT strategy that needed to be followed in order to achieve the goals of the Flemish e-government programme. The strategy outlined in detail which e-government standards had to be defined (such as a single, unique reference number for Flemish citizens and companies; authoritative data sources, generic data models and XML message formats for data exchange; interoperability and security specifications for message-based application integration, etc.), which e-government architectural components had to be developed (such as a portal site that provides a single point of access; an authentication gateway that provides common authentication services; a service bus that supports secure data exchange and application integration; a payment engine for electronic payments; a secure, reliable intranet for linking up government bodies, etc.) and which e-government guidelines had to be written (such as how to guarantee the reliability of on-line government information, how to add metadata to information resources and how to reliably electronically archive them, how to build multi-channel web sites accessible to people with disabilities, how to comply with privacy legislation, etc.). This resulted in a number of strategy documents outlining the technical and organisational steps that had to be undertaken to design and build the Flemish e-government back-office.
July 2002 till December 2003
Read also: presentation Strategisch ICT plan Vlaamse e-government [PDF 1 MB]
Writing the Decision of the Flemish Government
on the next phase of the Flemish e-government programme
at the request of the (previous) Flemish e-government team and the cabinet of the Flemish prime minister, I single-handedly wrote a Decision of the Flemish Government on the next phase of the e-government programme ("De verdere uitbouw van het Vlaamse e-government"). This crucial Decision specified in precise detail the Flemish e-government objectives for 2002 and 2003, defined the organisational structure that had to be put in place to realise these ambitious objectives, outlined how the central e-government team and the e-government clusters had to work together, etc. This Decision was the start of the initial operational phase of the e-government programme (2000-2003). The goal was by 2007 to provide every citizen, business or organisation with access to the key informational, interactive and transactional e-government services provided by the Flemish administration.
January 2002 till April 2002 (Decision approved on May 24, 2002)
Read also: document Nota Vlaamse regering "De verdere uitbouw van het Vlaamse e-government" May 24, 2002 [PDF 165 KB]
Performing an independent audit
of the existing version of the Flemish government portal
at the request of the Flemish e-government team I audited the existing version of the Flemish government portal. This involved a technical audit of the 4 key information applications in this portal: the "Infolijn" contact center, the publications database, the addresses database and the press releases database. After a SWOT analysis of the audit results, a series of workshops was organised with the application managers in order to jointly brainstorm on ideas for successful improvements. This resulted in a set of technical and organisational recommendations, primarily on how to improve the integration of these 4 applications, and how to extend the functionalities of the existing portal platform towards becoming a single, integrated point of access to e-government services.
September 2001 till November 2001
Read also: presentation Analyse Vlaamse portaal applicaties [PDF 438 KB]

Major projects for the department of Science, Innovation & Media

Managing the e-government cluster
"Culture, Sports, Free Time and Media"
taking into account my considerable prior ICT-technical and management experience, I was selected by the Administration Culture and the Administration Media to take up the role of e-government cluster manager for the e-government cluster "Cultuur, Sport, Vrije Tijd en Media", one of the 12 service clusters in the Flemish e-government programme. As the cluster manager, I was responsible for helping the cluster steering group to define short & medium-term e-government objectives and to formulate a long-term e-government strategy for the cluster, leading the operational cluster team, liasing with the central e-government team and the IT outsourcer of the Flemish administration, closely following up the different e-government projects of the cluster, initiating and co-ordinating the necessary change management processes, lobbying for the required resources, etc.
January 2002 till December 2004
Read also: presentation Voorstelling e-government cluster Cultuur, Sport, Vrije Tijd en Media [PDF 873 KB]
Setting up & managing a knowledge center
on e-government and the information society
together with my team members, I was responsible for setting up and managing the eFl@nders knowledge center on e-government and the information society. This knowledge center still actively collects data and background information (articles, studies & reports, strategy documents & policy papers, etc.) on e-government projects and information society initiatives in Flanders and abroad. This information was used in my own in-house strategic consultancy missions, and is still made freely available to all interested parties through the eFl@nders web site. I was also responsible for launching a monthly e-mail newsletter "Kenniswijzer" ("Knowledgepointer"), which contains carefully reviewed digests of documents on e-government and the information society, and interesting case studies of successful Flemish e-government projects (discussing key challenges, critical success factors, best practices, etc.) and successful information society actions & initiatives.
January 2002 till December 2004
Read also: presentation Cel Media-innovatie - Hoofdproces kennisbeheer [PDF 112 KB] and presentation eFlanders nieuwsbrief "Kenniswijzer" [PDF 35 KB]
Writing the Decision of the Flemish Government
on the framework for the eFl@nders - Digital Action Plan for Flanders
at the request of the cabinet of the minister responsible for Finance and Budget, Innovation, Media and Planning, I wrote a Decision of the Flemish Government on a framework for the eFl@nders - Digital Action Plan for Flanders. The eFl@nders - Digital Action Plan for Flanders was an initiative aimed at improving the position of Flanders in the new digital economy by stimulating the use of ICT and Internet by Flemish enterprises and citizens. The Decision set out a number of strategic goals for each of the objectives in the Action Plan, objectives that were very similar to the objectives of the eEurope 2002 initiative. The framework defined how these strategic goals had to be refined each year into a number of concrete operational goals and measurable outcomes, and were to be outlined in a yearly eFl@nders Year Plan. For each operational goal, the associated actions and initiatives required to achieve those goals were to be listed, as well as the Flemish ministers that were responsible for financing those actions. I was also asked to write initial versions of the eFl@nders Year Plan 2002 and the eFl@nders Year Plan 2003.
January 2002 till April 2002 (Decision approved on March 29, 2002)
Read also: document Nota Vlaamse regering "eFl@nders - Digitaal Actieplan Vlaanderen" Mar 29, 2002 [PDF 108 KB]
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