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Digital Participation Charter
The Scottish Government, leading private sector firms, academic institutions and charities have signed up to Scotland's Digital Participation Charter.
The Charter, signed by founding partners including Microsoft, BT Scotland and Patient Opinion, involves making a commitment to share information and align resources and efforts to deliver shared digital participation outcomes over the lifetime of this Parliament. It was signed yesterday on behalf of the Scottish Government by Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs Fiona Hyslop at the UK's first national GovCamp event in Edinburgh.
Other founding signatories include Hewlett-Packard, J.P. Morgan, Storm ID, MJI Business Solutions, Mydex CIC, Liberata, Cisco, University of Edinburgh, Carnegie UK Trust, Scotland IS, Sopra Group and Swirrl IT Ltd.
Ms Hyslop said:
"I am delighted to sign Scotland's Digital Participation Charter on behalf of the Scottish Government. This document brings together the public, private, academic and third sectors to achieve our shared goal of increasing digital participation in Scotland.
"Digital technology is crucial to Scotland's future economic, social and environmental success. It has the potential to bring many benefits to our nation including a skilled workforce for our businesses as well as access to online support, services and savings for people in our remote and disadvantaged communities, the elderly and those in poor health.
"The Scottish Government is fully committed to realising our ambition for Scotland's digital future. However, delivering that digital future will require the expertise, skill and effort of a wide range of organisations including all those who have signed up to this Charter so far. I look forward to more organisations adding their signatures in future, and I am sure that with our collective commitment, contribution and effort, we can make a real difference over the lifetime of this Parliament."
Derrick McCourt, Microsoft Scotland director, said:
"Microsoft is delighted to have played its part in the development of a Digital Participation Charter for Scotland. Access to and use of appropriate technology transforms lives and builds sustainable economies. We look forward to helping build a better Scotland, underpinned by technology that fosters growth, enables people take better care of their health, improves education in our schools and contributes to the goals of a low carbon Scotland."
Brendan Dick, BT Scotland Director, said:
"Any successful society that is to thrive economically and socially in the 21st century needs to exploit digital technology to the full. Scotland, as a small country on the geographic edge of Europe, has to take this opportunity seriously now, and in the future, if we are to catch up and beat the success derived from exploitation of digital services elsewhere in the UK, and abroad. This Charter will, I believe, set us on that journey."
Paul McGinness, Storm ID Director, said:
"Storm ID welcomes the opportunity to sign up to the Digital Participation Charter. We firmly believe that digital technology has the potential to transform the quality, cost and delivery of national and local public services over the next five years. As the internet occupies a primary position in citizens' lives we are excited by the possibilities and look forward to playing a part in realising this ambition. "
Melvyn Ingleson, MJI Business Solutions Director, said:
"I have been greatly encouraged by the support that we have received across the sectors in developing GovCamp and in the development of the Digital Participation Charter. I look forward to continuing to drive forward adoption of the Charter across Scotland, and to playing my part in increasing digital participation especially amongst disadvantaged communities and families who will benefit so much."
Gina Alexander, Patient Opinion, Engagement & Support Officer, Scotland, said:
"Patient Opinion is delighted to support GovCamp Scotland and Scotland's Digital Participation Charter. We are looking forward to working alongside like-minded people, and relish the opportunity to share our knowledge and experience of using the power of the web to help improve health services."
Alex Stobart of Mydex CIC said:
"Scotland's future lies within its individuals and communities. What Mydex makes possible is devolution of online power, responsibility and trust, where appropriate, right to the individual. Scotland has the right scale, the unity of purpose, the ambition for participation and the political will to make this happen."
Bill Roberts, Founder of Swirrl IT Ltd., said:
"It's fantastic to see such a diverse group committing to Scotland's Digital Participation Charter. We're looking forward to working alongside other signatories to help make Scotland a better place to live and work. It's important that the Charter includes a commitment to open data, because of its potential to improve access to useful information, efficiency of government and economic growth."
Alison McLaughlin, Head of Public Sector Scotland at Sopra Group, said:
"All of us who live and work in Scotland are stakeholders in Scotland's Digital Future. In Sopra Group we are passionate about the enabling role of technology to achieve efficiencies and broaden the reach and capacity of Public Services. These ambitions will not be realized without Digital Participation. We are therefore delighted to support GovCamp, which gives an opportunity to work together with our colleagues in government to achieve that aim."
Scotland's Digital Participation Charter has been signed by Microsoft, BT Scotland, Patient Opinion, Hewlett-Packard, J.P. Morgan, Storm ID, MJI Business Solutions, Mydex CIC, Liberata, Cisco, University of Edinburgh, Carnegie UK Trust, Scotland IS, Sopra Group and Swirrl IT Ltd. The Charter will be open to all organisations to sign up to over time. A core group of signatories, who will be responsible for governance and development of the Charter action plan, will be established by January 2012.
Scotland's Digital Participation Charter is aligned with the Scottish Government's Digital Strategy, which was published in March 2011.
GovCamps are initiatives supported by Microsoft which bring Governments, business and academic institutions together to better understand how to respond to the digital age. Locations for previous camps have included Brazil, India, Germany, Mexico, the USA and Canada. As GovCamp is a crowd-sourced brand other GovCamp events have taken place in the UK and Scotland, however this is the first time that Microsoft have partnered with a national Government and its Ministers in the UK. Two other GovCamps are proposed by Microsoft during 2011-12, in addition to the one in Scotland - in Singapore and Turkey.