Dubai: Three UAE government establishments won in the Best Mobile Government Services category of the World Government Summit Awards in Dubai on Tuesday.
His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, presented the awards to all winners. The Roads and Transport Authority in Dubai bagged the Transport and Infrastructure award for its smart app for offering dozens of services and guides for commuters through the platform.
The Safety and Security category award went to Dubai Police for its namesake app, while Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority won the Tourism award for its Visit Abu Dhabi app.
There were six other categories under government services, including in education, health and environment.
The second main segment was the Best Government Emerging Technologies, also open to government departments from around the world. The award was given to three winners.
Estonia was selected winner for using blockchain technology to secure digital records of patients in the country’s health sector.
Singapore’s transport ministry won second place for promoting self-driving cars for commuters in the city-state.
Amsterdam in the Netherlands was honoured with third place for providing an open-data approach to enable various sectors to easily develop smart services for the city’s residents.
The third main category was the $100,000 Blockchain Virtual GovHack Award, won by Project Oaken.
There was also a special Year of Giving category at this year’s summit, in line with 2017 as the Year of Giving initiative of the UAE. The award went to HyperGive, a digital wallet project for the homeless that uses blockchain technology “to ensure funds are used for their intended purpose” of providing meal options.
Also, a Global Universities Challenge Award was organised for universities worldwide to develop a model of how governments in the future would work. Each university team had seven minutes to present their project at WGS. The award went to Harvard John F. Kennedy School of Government in the US.
Harvard student Gustavo Payan, who was part of the winning team, told Gulf News after the awards that their project espoused “citizen governance currency” where ordinary people would be involved in the workings of the government, in that they would provide or practise solutions to problems. They would then earn special government coins as incentives, which would be cashable or usable in health and education access, for example.
“The whole point is that of merging the identity of the citizens with that of the government so that it becomes a governance system,” Payan said.
The three-day summit, held at the Madinat Jumeirah Resort in Dubai, attracted 4,000 delegates and 150 speakers from almost 140 countries.
Box: Winners of World Government Summit 2017 Awards
Category: Best Mobile Government Services
Education — Learning Potential, Australian Government of Education and Training
Health — Guardians of Heath app, Ministry of Health, Brazil
Social Affairs — Germany, for developing an app for migrants
Tourism — Visit Abu Dhabi app, Tourism and Culture Authority, Abu Dhabi
Environment — Easti Energia, Estonian Energy Company
Safety and Security — Dubai Police app
Trade and Economy — Vendors, Singapore’s Ministry of Finance
Transport and Infrastructure — RTA app, Roads and Transport Authority, Dubai
One-stop App — Mobile Government of Kazakhstan
Category: Best Government Emerging Technologies
Winner: e-Health Records, Estonia
Category: Blockchain Virtual GovHack
Winner: Project Oaken
Category: Year of Giving 2017
Winner: HyperGive — a secure digital donation system for providing meals for homeless
Category: Global Universities Challenge
Winner: Harvard John F. Kennedy School of Government, USA