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2019-09-20 › OSCE continues supporting digital transformation processes in Kyrgyzstan

 On 17 September 2019 a civic forum entitled “Digital Citizenship: I am digital, be digital!” took place in Bishkek. The event was organized by the OSCE Programme Office in Bishkek and is part of its continuous support to the Kyrgyz Government’s digital transformation efforts aimed at fostering good governance and respect for human rights.

The forum provided a platform for an extensive dialogue between the government, civil society and business representatives on existing achievements and challenges, rights and responsibilities in the process of digitalization in the country.

The participants were able to brainstorm ways to empower citizens with technological skills, create client-oriented high-quality municipal services, and ensure a stable digital economy and pro-active e-governance using innovative technologies.

The idea of digital citizenship is an important part of digital ecosystems, which foresees citizens using information technologies to engage in  various fields of life, ranging from e-commerce, Internet banking to public services and more. Taking into account various information security threats as well as existing opportunities for the digital transformation of governance and economies, it is crucial to establish mechanisms that will guarantee trust, accessibility, safety, and transparency among all stakeholders. This includes respect for privacy and personal data protection in the process of digitalization.  

The civic forum helped to identify challenges to building digital infrastructure in Kyrgyzstan. These are expected to be addressed during a follow-up competition of innovative ideas, the three-day Digital Citizenship Hackathon in October 2019. Its participants will discuss solutions to these challenges in the form of new technologies, business projects, and social initiatives.

In addition, different teams formed from the private sector, academia, and civil society will compete against each other, with the best proposals rewarded with mentorship and financial support by the organizers of the civic forum.  

The civic forum and the Digital Citizenship Hackathon 2019 are organized with the help of the public fund “Civil Initiative on Internet Policy”. The fund is supported by  the Open Data project of Kyrgyzstan’s State Committee of Information Technologies and Communications, the OSCE Programme Office in Bishkek, the Soros Foundation-Kyrgyzstan, and a Canadian think-do tank, the SecDev Foundation.   

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