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Albania

Establishment and Distribution of Digital Counters (AL0055)

Overview

At-a-Glance

Action Plan: Albania Third Action Plan 2016 – 2018

Action Plan Cycle: 2016

Status: Inactive

Institutions

Lead Institution: National Agency for Information Society (NAIS)

Support Institution(s): Close cooperation with private sector

Policy Areas

E-Government

IRM Review

IRM Report: Albania End-of-Term Report 2016-2018, Albania Progress Report 2016-2018

Starred: No

Early Results: Did Not Change

Design i

Verifiable: No

Relevant to OGP Values: Not Relevant

Potential Impact:

Implementation i

Completion:

Description

Through the distribution of digital counters e-Albania portal aims at providing access and easier navigation on the Internet for all Albanian citizens who can run on a single point of public access to information or public services online that are provided through the unique e-government portal. Digital counter will offer public services 24/7. Presentation for the first time of digital counters will bring increased transparency to provide the administration services. Through electronic delivery, NAIS intends to improve availability, quality and transparency of public services and reduce time of implementation of procedures and public administration costs. Status quo or problem addressed by the commitment In order to improve public services provided to the citizens and to promote latest technologies, NAIS has taken the initiative to spread digital counters throughout the country. Presentation for the first time of digital counters will bring increased transparency to provide the administration services. Through electronic delivery, NAIS intends to improve availability, quality and transparency of public services and reduce time of implementation of procedures and public administration costs. Main Objective Through the distribution of digital counters e-Albania portal aims at providing access and easier navigation on the Internet for all Albanian citizens who can run on a single point of public access to information or public services online that are provided through the unique e-government portal. Digital counter will offer public services 24/7.

IRM Midterm Status Summary

12. Establish digital counters

Commitment Text:

Title: Establishment and distribution of digital counters

In order to improve public services provided to the citizens and to promote latest technologies, NAIS has taken the initiative to spread digital counters throughout the country.

Presentation for the first time of digital counters will bring increased transparency to provide the administration services. Through electronic delivery, NAIS intends to improve availability, quality and transparency of public services and reduce time of implementation of procedures and public administration costs.

Through the distribution of digital counters e-Albania portal aims at providing access and easier navigation on the Internet for all Albanian citizens who can run on a single point of public access to information or public services online that are provided through the unique e-government portal. Digital counter will offer public services 24/7.

Responsible institution: National Agency for Information Society (NAIS)

Supporting institution(s): Close cooperation with private sector

Start date: 2016 End date: 2017

Context and Objectives

In order to improve public services provided to citizens and to promote the latest technologies, the National Agency for Information Society (NAIS) took the initiative to set up digital counters throughout the country. Digital counters (or kiosks) are to be set up at public spaces near institutions and trade centers. By visiting these digital counters, citizens will be able to access e-Albania, the e-government portal, 24/7. Through electronic delivery, NAIS intends to improve availability of public services, and reduce time and public administration costs. By logging in, citizens are able to make payments, obtain information about public services, print certificates, etc.

Although this commitment enhances access to e-services for citizens, its relevance to OGP values is unclear. While this commitment aims to increase quality of access, the actual amount of information disclosed is unchanged and it does not improve access to e-services to citizens who do not have access to the internet (or other means of using e-services) in remote or rural areas. NAIS plans for digital counters to be distributed only in urban centers, near municipalities or other institutions.

The specificity of this commitment is low. While the main objective and intended outcomes of this commitment are clear, the commitment text does not provide measurable steps needed to spread digital counters and monitor their effectiveness. The number of digital counters is also unspecified.

This commitment has no potential impact. These digital counters are intended to provide access to e-Albania for citizens who do not have internet access, or do not have frequent access. However, planned digital counters will be distributed to main urban centers and most citizens in urban areas have access to the internet. Civil society representatives suggest digital counters can improve access to e-services for citizens in rural and remote areas of the country.[Note121: Interview with Dalina Jashari, Manager of CIVILISC Project, July 2017.] This commitment would have greater potential impact if digital counters were instead distributed to more rural areas.

Completion

The distribution of digital counters to enable citizens’ access to e-Albania services was announced in December 2015.[Note122: The distribution of digital counters, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RgxL0buUumc. ] The 2016 annual NAIS report and the e-Albania portal announced that 15 digital counters were distributed to municipalities in Tirana, Shkodra, Korca, Vlora, Malesi e Madhe, Elbasan, and Saranda. Other digital counters were distributed in Fier (Elkos trading center), Durres (FlagShip Center), Fier, Kavaja, and other state institutions (e.g. ADISA) in Tirana (four digital counters).[Note123: NAIS 2016 Report, page 8, http://akshi.gov.al/images/raporti%20vjetor%202016.pdf. ] In 2016, 465 e-services were available at e-Albania, 241,621 people were registered as users, and 42 public institutions were connected to e-Albania.

This process was accompanied by some informational events on how to use the digital counters and other advantages offered through them. In November 2016 one such event was held at the premises of the regional Directorate of Transport in Tirana, with citizens applying for different services (e.g. driving license, vehicle registrations, etc.).[Note124: E-Albania portal, https://e-albania.al/lajmi.aspx?id=68.]

Early Results

No information was provided to the IRM researcher on the implementation of this commitment from NAIS at the end of the reporting period. Accordingly, this report could not establish the frequency of use of the digital counters in urban areas.

Participants at the focus groups with youth and with citizens from remote areas confirmed they were aware of the digital counters but had not used them.

Next Steps

The IRM researcher recommends that this commitment not be carried forward to the next action plan. As mentioned earlier, the establishment and distribution of digital counters is not relevant to OGP values. However, it is clear that this commitment aims to provide increased access to e-services on e-Albania. Given the confusion surrounding e-Albania and its usage, the digital counter in combination with informational awareness activities could be very helpful for citizens. The government should consider distributing instructional or educational materials alongside these digital counters but pursue this activity outside of the country’s OGP action plan. Instead, the IRM researcher recommends the focus of action plans shift to targeted actions that address OGP values.

IRM End of Term Status Summary

12. Establish digital counters

Commitment Text:

Title: Establishment and distribution of digital counters

In order to improve public services provided to the citizens and to promote latest technologies, NAIS has taken the initiative to spread digital counters throughout the country.

Presentation for the first time of digital counters will bring increased transparency to provide the administration services. Through electronic delivery, NAIS intends to improve availability, quality and transparency of public services and reduce time of implementation of procedures and public administration costs.

Through the distribution of digital counters e-Albania portal aims at providing access and easier navigation on the Internet for all Albanian citizens who can run on a single point of public access to information or public services online that are provided through the unique e-government portal. Digital counter will offer public services 24/7.

Responsible institution: National Agency for Information Society (NAIS)

Supporting institution(s): Close cooperation with private sector

Start date: 2016.................... End date: 2017

Commitment Aim:

This commitment aimed to set up digital counters (or kiosks) in public spaces throughout the country, to provide easier access to the internet to all citizens. By visiting these digital counters, citizens would also be able to access public information through e-Albania, the e-government portal, 24/7. Through electronic delivery, NAIS intended to improve the availability of public services, and reduce the time and public administration costs. By logging in, citizens would be able to make payments, obtain information about public services, and print certificates, etc.

Status

Midterm: Complete

The distribution of digital counters to enable citizens’ access to e-Albania services was announced in December 2015. The 2016 annual NAIS report and the e-Albania portal announced that 15 digital counters were distributed to 10 municipalities. This process was accompanied by some informational events on how to use the digital counters and other advantages offered through them. [75]

Did It Open Government?

Access to Information: Did Not Change

Civic Participation: Did Not Change

Public Accountability: Did Not Change

This commitment has no OGP relevance as written, and as implemented it did not result in any changes relevant to the OGP values of access to information, civic participation or public accountability.

Carried Forward?

At the time of writing this report, Albania had not published its new action plan. The IRM researcher recommends that this commitment not be carried forward as it is not clearly relevant to OGP values.

[75] IRM Progress Report for Albania 2016-2017.


Commitments

Open Government Partnership