The Government has announced plans to set up a group to advise it on how to build the digital economy and reduce digital divides, with the aim of making ICT the second largest contributor to the economy by 2025.
Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media and Government Digital Services Minister, Clare Curran has called for expressions of interest saying such group would “bring immediate focus and a plan to ensure all Kiwis have affordable access to digital services, and the motivation, skills and trust to fully participate in our digital world.”
She foreshadowed creation of the group in her speech at NetHui on 9 November, along with one to look at broadcasting and digital media and ICT/ Communications, and one to focus on open government.
The digital divide group’s first task will be to provide advice to the Government on the development of a blueprint for digital inclusion and digital enablement.
Curran said she was also keen for the group to consider possible future scenarios and identify what is needed from government to enable businesses and individuals to take advantage of the opportunities provided by digital technology.”
“There’ll be up to 15 people in the group, with the ability to bring in additional members or expertise to address particular issues,” she said.
“I’m particularly keen for it to reflect New Zealand’s diverse communities and to include all age groups and ethnicities, including perspectives from Māori.
Curran said she had not predetermined the group’s membership and was seeking the best thinkers across the community with the aim of achieving “genuine collaboration … about increasing productivity, growing the digital economy and reducing the digital divides.”
Expressions of interest close on 31 January 2018 and the group is expected to start operating in February. Terms of Reference and an application form are available here.