João Ricardo Vasconcelos

João Ricardo Vasconcelos is a digital government policy analyst at the Reform of the Public Sector Division, Public Governance Directorate of the OECD. His work focuses on the analysis of digital government development, supporting the governments of the OECD member and partner countries to take full benefit of the ongoing digital transformation of the public sector. João is the lead coordinator of several cross-cutting activities in the Digital Government team, namely the OECD Working Party of Senior Digital Government Officials (E-Leaders), the E-Leaders Thematic Groups and numerous OECD Digital Government Reviews (e.g. Brazil, Chile, Morocco, African Portuguese Speaking Countries and Timor Leste).

Before joining the OECD, João led the Innovation and International Relations Unit of AMA – Agency for the Administrative Modernization, Presidency of the Council of Ministers, Portugal, coordinating projects such as the EGOV Innovation Hub, the Common Knowledge Network or He was the Portuguese representative in several high level international committees and groups from the OECD, the European Commission and the Community of Portuguese Speaking Countries.

João also served as project manager and project officer at the Knowledge Society Agency (UMIC), Presidency of the Council of Ministers, Portugal, being responsible for several projects in the areas of digital skills, digital inclusion and ICT in higher education.


Talk Abstract: Governing the Digital Transformation of the Public Sector

Digital technologies are rapidly and pervasively reshaping economies, societies and public sectors in new ways. Social media, mobile and smart phones, cloud computing and, more recently, big data analytics, artificial intelligence, blockchain and augmented reality, are increasingly entering citizens’ everyday lives. Citizens’ experience with digital service delivery in the private sector has raised expectations regarding public services. The imperative for governments across the OECD and beyond is to make the digital transformation of the way they work and deliver value happen. The final objective or stage in this digital transformation of the public sector path is “Digital Government”, enabling governments to create increased public value and broad public sector modernisation (boosting greater openness, transparency and innovation e.g. through new forms of engagement of and collaboration with non-institutional actors leading to higher trust in government) through the integration of digital technologies and user preferences in service design and delivery of direct personal services and in shaping public policy outcomes, while also achieving efficiency and productivity gains[1].

The presentation will provide a general picture of how the digital revolution sets up a new policy environment for governments and its implications for the governance arrangements of digital government. Based on the OECD Recommendation on Digital Government Strategies, the presentation will elaborate on the evolution of institutional frameworks and the necessary co-ordination mechanisms to deliver results. The presentation will also highlight the importance of bringing the ecosystem of public, private and civil society stakeholders on board in the development and implementation of digital government policies and underline the relevance of key digital government enablers to drive a coherent and sustainable digital transformation of the public sector.

[1] OECD (2017) Creating a Citizen-Driven Environment through good ICT Governance – The digital transformation of the public sector: helping governments respond to the needs of networked societies.