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Cyprus-The role of E-Governance in a bi-communal, bi-zonal federation

Cyprus,
The role of
E-Governance
In a future Bi-communal,
Bi-zonal,
Federation.

By Andreas Maratheftis
Nueronic IT Consulting
2005

By Andreas Maratheftis, Nueronic IT Consulting 1


Cyprus-The role of E-Governance in a bi-communal, bi-zonal federation

1 Table of Contents

1 Table of Contents ............................................................................................................... 2


2 Foreword ............................................................................................................................ 4
2.1 Why did I Choose this module & Learning ObjectivesError! Bookmark not
defined.
3 Prologue ............................................................................................................................. 5
4 Government and Governance ............................................................................................ 5
4.1 What is Government and e-Governance ................................................................. 5
4.1.1 Government ......................................................................................................... 5
4.1.2 E-Governance...................................................................................................... 6
5 Cyprus, the Current Situation ............................................................................................. 6
5.1 Why e-Governance .................................................................................................. 7
6 Case Studies ...................................................................................................................... 9
6.1 Great Britain-A strategy for the wired world ............................................................. 9
6.2 Canada “Most connected Nation”? ........................................................................ 10
6.3 Hong Kong ............................................................................................................. 11
6.4 Malaysia: Vision 2020 ............................................................................................ 12
6.5 Conclusion.............................................................................................................. 12
7 Recommendations ........................................................................................................... 13
7.1 Pre-requisites ......................................................................................................... 13
7.1.1 24/7 Services ..................................................................................................... 13
7.1.2 Usability ............................................................................................................. 13
7.1.2.1 Options ...................................................................................................... 13
7.1.3 Online Content ................................................................................................... 13
7.1.4 Learning and Training ........................................................................................ 13
7.1.5 Security .............................................................................................................. 14
7.1.6 Privacy and Confidentiality ................................................................................ 14
7.1.7 Public Awareness .............................................................................................. 14
7.1.8 Paperless Office................................................................................................. 14
7.1.9 IT Department .................................................................................................... 14
7.2 Projects and Initiatives ........................................................................................... 15
7.2.1 The Web ............................................................................................................ 15
7.2.1.1 Online Forms............................................................................................. 15
7.2.1.2 Access to all .............................................................................................. 15
7.2.1.3 Empowering the people ............................................................................ 16
7.2.1.4 Customisable web sites and services ....................................................... 16
7.2.2 Businesses......................................................................................................... 16
7.2.3 Government ....................................................................................................... 16

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Cyprus-The role of E-Governance in a bi-communal, bi-zonal federation

7.2.4 Legislation .......................................................................................................... 16


7.3 RFID Identity Cards & Smart Cards ....................................................................... 17
7.4 Health Systems ...................................................................................................... 17
7.5 Schools Online ....................................................................................................... 18
7.6 Biometric Passports ............................................................................................... 18
8 Deployment and Implementation challenges ................................................................... 19
9 Cyprus, E-Governance SWOT ......................................................................................... 20
10 Implementation ............................................................................................................. 22
11 Review and Conclusion ................................................................................................ 23
11.1 Review.................................................................................................................... 23
11.2 Conclusion.............................................................................................................. 24
12 Module Evaluation .......................................................... Error! Bookmark not defined.
13 Appendix ....................................................................................................................... 25
13.1 Abstracts from the Anan Plan ................................................................................ 25
14 References.................................................................................................................... 27

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Cyprus-The role of E-Governance in a bi-communal, bi-zonal federation

2 Foreword
The recent referendum in Cyprus on April 2004 brought the Cyprus problem closer to a
solution than ever before since the Turkish invasion and occupation in 1974.
With the advancement of technology, we have come to a point to wonder ,“What is e-
governance?”, how can technology empower democracy, how can technology empower
people in Government, and how can Government can utilize technology, to offer services to
it’s citizens. These, am hoping to apply in a scenario of a solved Cyprus problem, based on
the Secretary Generals Kofi Anan Plan (http://www.cyprus-un-plan.org/), of a bi-communal,
bi-zonal federation.
I had several discussions with members of the IT community in Cyprus (Cyprus Computer
Society), debating why there is currently no substantial use of technology in the Cyprus
Government, the reasons behind this, and any, if any, future plans in a united Cyprus. Based
on my conclusions, and based on comments like “e-Governance in Cyprus is non-existent”,”
talking about e-Governance in Cyprus is like talking about Cyprus in NASA space programs”,
I have decided to look into the matter, why is technology not used in Cyprus?, why the vision
of e-Governance is so far away, especially now that Cyprus is part of the EU?
With this report am hoping to make some

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3 Prologue
The aim and objective of this report is to investigate, how technology can be used in a
scenario of a solved Cyprus problem based on the context of bi-zonal, bi-communal
federation in terms of the “Anan Plan”.
Although this report does not have political content, it assumes that a possible future solution
of Cyprus may be based upon the criteria and factors set in the UN’s Secretary General, Mr
Kofi Anna plan for the unification of Cyprus. Despite the fact that the “Anan Plan” was reject
by the Greek-Cypriots in April 2004, and accepted by the Turkish-Cypriots, the Cyprus
problem was very close to a solution more than ever before and I believe that if eventually a
solution to the problem is found it will be based on the criteria set in the UN plan.
Moreover, this report will no mention or deal with the Cyprus-Greece-Turkey, history which
goes back as far as 400 years ago, or the hostilities of 1963-4, or 1974.

The internet will be used extensively since the author is currently in the UK. Several attempts
have been made to contact the Cyprus Government for Information but failed. Thus a big part
of this report will be based on assumptions and estimations.

Through this report, I will try to examine the current technology and especially internet related
technologies and recommend ways of applying these to achieve electronic service delivery in
a future Cyprus Government.

4 Government and Governance

4.1 What is Government and e-Governance

4.1.1 Government
Government is the organization, which has the power to make and enforce laws and is the
system that administers the community of people in a specific territory. Today’s, Governments
are elected by the people through the political parties that represent them. There are several
forms of Government including Democratic forms (Parliamentary system, Presidential
System).
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_forms_of_government)

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4.1.2 E-Governance
“E-government is a form of e-business in governance and refers to the processes and
structures needed to deliver electronic services to the public (citizens and businesses),
collaborate with business partners and to conduct electronic transactions within an
organisational entity.” (M, Backus,2001)

E-Governance is a concept in which Governments “decentralize responsibilities and


processes and they start to use electronic means such as the Internet” to offer Government
services electronically. E-Governance of course is not just a Government web site, but its
dynamic in the sense that the “over the counter service” will become redundant and forms,
information and other services will be provided to the citizens through electronic means 24/7.
(M, Backus,2001)

5 Cyprus, the Current Situation


Currently in the Republic of Cyprus(1) we have a Presidential Democracy in which “the
legislative power of the Republic is exercised by the House of Representatives in all matters”
(http://www.cyprus.gov.cy/cyphome/govhome.nsf/Main?OpenFrameSet)
Furthermore “ The term of office of the House of Representatives is five years. A general
election must be held on the second Sunday of the month immediately preceding the month
in which the term of office of the outgoing House expires. The outgoing House continues in
office until the newly elected House assumes office, but during this time the outgoing House
does not have the power to make any laws or to take any decision on any matter, except in
urgent and exceptional unforeseen circumstances”
(http://www.cyprus.gov.cy/cyphome/govhome.nsf/Main?OpenFrameSet)
“Following a constitutional amendment in 1985, the House has 80 seats - 56 for Greek
Cypriot and 24 for Turkish Cypriot Deputies - with Deputies elected by universal suffrage of
adults over the age of 18. Direct and secret ballots are held on the same day for both
communities. However, since 1964, Turkish Cypriot members have not attended the House,
and no elections have been held among the Turkish Cypriot community in accordance with
the Republic's constitution. Despite this anomaly, the House has kept vacant the seats
allocated to the Turkish Cypriot community. These seats remain at the disposal of Turkish
Cypriot Deputies should they be elected according to the constitutional
provisions.”(http://www.cyprus.gov.cy/cyphome/govhome.nsf/Main?OpenFrameSet)

Currently in Cyprus there is no substantial e-Governance infrastructure. Although


Government web sites exists and are interlinked, there is no effective service delivery of
services electronically, not even in the local Government level.

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Based on my research I believe there are several reasons to justify the above:
 The Government is still focused on meeting EU requirements, due to the recent
succession of Cyprus in the European Union.
 A large amount of the Government budget is primarily aimed at the alignment of Cyprus
with the EU and on the defence fund, due to the ongoing Turkish occupation.
 The technophobe culture of Cyprus citizens.

Although the Cyprus Government is aiming in “promoting the establishment of high


technology industry through the creation of incubators and a research and technological
development centers”, based on the information found, and on the personal experience level
there are no services offered electronically to citizens.
(http://www.cyprus.gov.cy/cyphome/govhome.nsf/Main?OpenFrameSet).

In 2004, the UN secretary Mr Kofi Anan proposed plan for the settlement of the Cyprus
Problem. Although the plan was rejected by the people, the problem was really close to being
solved, thus I have decided to use the plan, as a basis for this report, and to examine in
general how would the could Government Services be delivered electronically to the bi-
communal community of a bi-zonal state.
Notes:
1. Since the Turkish invasion in 1974 the Turkish Cypriots of the self proclaimed "Turkish
Republic of Northern Cyprus” are only recognised and supported by Turkey.

5.1 Why e-Governance


In this report e-Governance will be defined as the delivery of electronic Government services
to citizens, Government parties and business using the latest technologies available as well
as using technology to simplify governance in a united Cyprus.
So why would Cyprus need to use e-governance? Although from a political viewpoint
implementing e-Governance will take years of planning, it is vital for both communities to
understand that:
1. Electronic delivery of services is part of an EU requirements
2. Using technology to deliver services can bring down the barriers of language and
cultural differences
3. If used and designed correctly can be used by all people, 24/7, this will save time and
decrease long queues.
4. It is fully supported by UNESCO - the United Nations Educational, Scientific and
Cultural Organization (UNESCO) (http://portal.unesco.org/ci/en/ev.php-
URL_ID=3038&URL_DO=DO_TOPIC&URL_SECTION=201.html)
5. It can connect all three parties, citizens, Government and businesses. (M,
Backus,2001)

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6. It can empower people, by giving them the ability to be actively involved in


Government. I t can provide information on political processes, legislation, privacy
services and options.

I believe E-Governance has two tier architecture; the first tier is e-democracy and the
second is e-government. The difference lies in their objectives.
E-Democracy is primarily focused on:
 Providing correct and up to date information to the citizen
 Motivating the citizen to be actively involved in politics by voting
 Providing consultation to the citizen on matters related to services and representation.

E-Government on the other hand, is focused on enhancing the interaction between


Government and citizens, and between Government and Businesses using online services.
Furthermore it is also aimed internally in order to simplify the administration of Government.
(M, Backus,2001)
This can be summarized in the model below:

EXTERNAL
G2C, Government to citizen G2B, Government to Businesses
Businesses
Citizens E-Governance

G2G,
Government to
Central Local
Government Government
INTERNAL

Thus the Cyprus Government can follow this model. The change can slowly begin by offering
services electronically, either through local Government, or central Government. As this
progresses based on the maturity model, proposed by Gartner (see appendix) the public and
businesses will start asking for more and more complex services.
This however does not mean that all departs of a Government have to be at the same level.
The first stage is Information; the Government may use static electronic means to offer
information to citizens, businesses and Government.
The second phase is more interactive; citizens have a more dynamic relationship with the
Government services, and interact by asking questions through e-mail, downloading forms
and documents.

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The third phase the delivery of services becomes more interactive and complex, the public
conducts online transactions, fills out and submits electronic forms, uses Government online
applications and conducts online business.
The fourth stage is the stage in which, all services are under one central location, in one
repository, and would be customized and can be accessed on demand, by the users.
Currently the Cyprus Government as it is, partially in stage two, where the public and
business can view online information and download application forms from the internet.

6 Case Studies
In this section of the report I will try and examine how other countries deploy ICT in
Government and look into ways in which these technologies can be applied in Cyprus.

6.1 Great Britain-A strategy for the wired world


Since November 1996, the United Kingdom has formed a strategy to “Modernising
Government”(link book).
Although the United Kingdom is a smaller island compared to other countries of the European
Union and the United States, it has taken an aggressive approach to delivering information
and services electronically.
Like several other countries, the UK Government had to deal with the following major
problems:
1. The provision of services to remote areas
2. The multilingual environment
3. The digital divide
Thus the UK Government’s goal is to achieve the following:
1. Full use and application of ICT, in Government
2. Computerization of departments and automation of Government processes (e.g land
registry).
3. Increase the public’s awareness of the importance of ICT.
4. Provide, electronic services better and more efficient to businesses and citizens
5. Improve the efficiency and openness of Government administration and
6. Secure substantial cost savings for the taxpayer.

Currently the UK Government offers a number of services online such as:


1. Report Crimes
2. Report Benefit Fraud
3. Voting
4. Buy TV license
5. Pay council tax online
6. Apply for planning permission

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7. Pay national insurance


8. Tax self assessment
(http://www.direct.gov.uk/QuickFind/DoItOnline/DoItOnlineCategory/fs/en)

Furthermore a big number of projects are developed and focused on the local government
such as:
1. E-learning
2. Bridging the Digital Divide
3. Local Authority e-business
4. Wireless internet
5. Smart Cards and
6. Biometrics
(http://www.localegovnp.org/default.asp?sID=1093959843576)

6.2 Canada “Most connected Nation”?


The Canadian Government begun the approach towards “ Renewing Government Services
using Information Technology” ( ref book), by creating a 29 member Information Highway
Advisory Council (IHAC), consisting of business leaders and public interest representatives.
The council released a report in September 1995 with 300 recommendations focused on:
1. Competitiveness and Job Creation
2. Canadian Content and Culture
3. Access and Social Impact
4. Consumer awareness and Learning
5. Research and Development
(rref book)
According to the report the council predicted significant cost savings, and an improvement of
the quality of services the government offered, depending of how effectively Information
Technology would be used.
Some projects focused on e-governance are (ref book):
1. Community Access Program. CAP had a goal to establish over 10,000 public
access sites in rural and urban communities in Canada. The project now is focused
on providing these facilities in urban centres with more than 50,000 in population.
2. School Net. This project’s main objective was to connect all schools, public and
secondary together with libraries in Canada and provide them with Internet Access.
By March 1999 almost 15,000 schools and 3,300 libraries were connected. To further
support this the Government offered over 250,000 computers to schools through a
program titled Computers for Schools. Furthermore several online portals exists such
as CyberWise (http://www.cyberwise.ca/index.htm) and Cybertrip
(http://www.cybertip.ca/en/cybertip/) to further support the role of SchooNet.

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3. Services Canada. A project in which the all government and agencies will be
connected on one secure network that will deliver services electronically over the
internet. Users can, file income taxes, and conduct business related transaction with
the Government online through one portal
4. Electronic Service Delivery on Line Database. ESD is a portal in which in which
users can find material and information on the latest research, case studies, policies
and tools in electronic service delivery.

6.3 Hong Kong


Titled Digital 21, is Hong Kong’s strategy to implement Information Technology in
government.
The result of this initiative was the set up of the Information and Technology Broadcasting
Bureau. The ITTB, in Digital 21, “have set their vision, initiatives and targets on how
government, businesses, industry and academia can work together to make Hong Kong a
leading digital city in a globally connected world”.
Thus since October 200 ITTB rolled out a number of project to support the above mission
statement:
1. Electronic service delivery. Services are delivered through the personal computer,
interactive-kiosks, interactive public pay phones and through digital television.
2. Interactive Government Directory. Also focused on the provision of services.
Services offered include:
a. Transportation services with maps and videos
b. Registration and renewal of motor vehicle licenses and drivers licence
c. Financial advice
d. Employment Opportunities
e. Tax payments and tax returns.
Furthermore Hong Kong ensured that all this services are reliable, secure and do not
compromise the citizen’s privacy and trust.

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6.4 Malaysia: Vision 2020


As with many other countries the Malaysian Government is aiming at facilitating IT in
government so that the public and private sector would be able to conduct transactions with
the government.
Thus Vision:2020 aims at:
1. Making Malaysia a fully developed industrialised rich country by 2020
2. Balanced Growth
3. National Unity
4. Malaysia as a role model of socio-economic development.
To achieve these aims the National IT Agenda (NITA) was formed. NITA outlined the
following strategy:
1. Ensure widespread use of IT in all sectors.
2. Develop a National IT plan
3. Expand IT education and Training
4. Review laws related to IT development
5. Enhance IT awareness
The Malaysian government has a ig number of projects and strategies already in place. Some
of these are:
1. Smart schools; to promote life long learning and training through the use of ICT
2. Research and development centres, including multimedia Universities and
enhancement of local Universities.
3. Portals
4. Online delivery of government services.

6.5 Conclusion
The main conclusion that can be drawn from the above case studies is that Cyprus is really
behind, in terms of offering services online, to citizens and to businesses. Although an IT
government services does exists it is mostly focused on providing services and applications
internally.
I believe that as an Information Systems designer I would recommend a roadmap base don
the strategy formed in the UK. I will base that on two main reasons:
1. The Cyprus legislation is very similar and is largely based on the English Legal system
(Cyprus until 1960 was under UK rule).
2. The diversity of cultural and lingual characteristics in both countries.

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7 Recommendations
Although the Anan Plan was rejected by the Greek-Cypriot site, the Anan Plan set a roadmap
toward the solution of the problem.
Thus based on the plan and in order to fully integrate IT into government and deliver
government services electronically the following should be taken under consideration and
should be regarded as pre-requisites:

7.1 Pre-requisites

7.1.1 24/7 Services


The use of IT in government and the e-delivery of services will change the systems and
processes in place. Thus these have to adapt to dynamic 24/7 service model, in which
citizens and employees receive an immediate response of any application send electronically.
This is based on the fact that the citizens will expect more faster response times based on the
changed communication medium.

7.1.2 Usability
The systems online have to give clear and concise information of how each service can be
used and should give alternatives. It should take under consideration users of all ages, users
speaking Greek, Turkish and English (the three most spoken languages in Cyprus), users
with disabilities either mental or physical and should cater for these in full.

7.1.2.1 Options
The systems should give the users the ability to perform a task online, download a form or a
document, or manually (go to the specific office) to achieve a task.

7.1.3 Online Content


The content provided on government we sites should be transformed to dynamic content and
should provide the latest news, announcements and services. Content Managers should be
should be responsible for the content of sites, internal (G2G) or external (G2C, G2B).

7.1.4 Learning and Training


All the government employees should be comfortable with the change. Everyone should be
trained on the new systems, the new services, and the tools that will be used to make that
change happen. Furthermore the government has to employee IT personnel, specialising in
different fields that have the required experience to achieve the goals set.

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7.1.5 Security
Computers nowadays are very vulnerable to external and internal attacks. Moving the
governments processes (information, communication and transactions) online makes matters
even worse. Thus secure networks, firewalls, IT policies, e-mail filtering and anti-virus
software must be enforced.

7.1.6 Privacy and Confidentiality


In the last 2 phases of the E-Governance maturity model, details and personal information of
citizens and business will be held, either electronically or in paper files. Thus the integration
and sharing of information between departments throughout government may result in
compromising individuals or a businesses confidentiality and privacy. Thus special
government sectors and legislations must be set up that enforce protocols which will
safeguard and secure these processes.

7.1.7 Public Awareness


If the government is aiming at making a large investment such as this, it should promote this
change not only internally but most importantly to the citizens. The web unfortunately is not
enough to market this, but broadcasting it and giving special seminars to citizens may ensure
that a big number of citizens make full use of the systems

7.1.8 Paperless Office


Together with the automation of processes, the government should strive to remove any
unnecessary paper. This should be a parallel process with the automation of processes. In
my opinion the first two major processes that the government should start with is the citizen,
business, and internal government application forms, and the second one the digitisation of
standard government documents.

7.1.9 IT Department
To make all these possible the IT department must be radically enhanced so that it would be
able to comply with the government proposed changes. Thus a solid and ongoing investment
has to be applied. The more the processes change the more vital the role of the IT
department becomes; not only during implementation but also during post- implementation in
order to ensure sustainable development.

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7.2 Projects and Initiatives


In this section, recommendation of how the latest technology can be used to deliver services
electronically to citizens, businesses and within government.

7.2.1 The Web


The web must be utilised in full. I believe that the technology is already there, and it’s more
affordable than ever before, thus it’s up to the Government to take advantage of this factor.
There are numerous examples of how technology is used in government; the case studies I
have looked at are just a small percentage of the overall usage of ICT.
Because the web is currently growing and will keep growing constantly the government must
build applications and systems that must be able to adapt and to the changing technologies
and concepts.

7.2.1.1 Online Forms


One of the first steps should be the attempt to digitise a big number of applications that are
currently on paper and use web forms and digital submission to replace them
Of course the government should first start small, by digitising the most commonly used forms
such as the tax return, building permits etc.
Overall the Cyprus Government should attempt to initially offer the following services:
1. Tax returns
2. Pay taxes
3. Pay Parking Tickets
4. Pay other fines
5. Search for jobs (government sector)
6. Book Driving test
7. Renew driving licence and car registrations
The more these services are used the more the citizens will expect more services to be
online.

7.2.1.2 Access to all


Although Cyprus is a small island there are a big number of locations that are currently
without internet connection. The government through the local councils should balance that
by:
1. Making the public aware of the services offered, and give free training seminars of
how these services can be used
2. Build ICT centres both in urban and rural areas
3. Offer free wireless internet in libraries and in community centres
4. Use Internet kiosks that automatically connect to the government services
5. Create schemes in which used computers from businesses are given to community
centres of individuals that cannot afford the technology.

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6. Make use of digital television to offer government services.

7.2.1.3 Empowering the people


The government should aim and provide the means for the citizens to be more involved in he
government processes. To achieve that the government can initially use the following:
1. Online forums
2. Polls
3. Online voting
4. Online communities
5. News in RSS feeds that can be downloaded to users desktops
6. Personalised blogs

7.2.1.4 Customisable web sites and services


Based on the fourth phase of the e-governance maturity model, the next stage would be the
full customisation of each web site so that users would be able to log in into a customised
space and fully take advantage of the services offered to them.

7.2.2 Businesses
The web can be used by business to interact with the government in the following ways:
1. Business registration guidelines online
2. Online registration
3. Online patent submission
4. Permits
5. Payment of taxes
The services will be offered online, but of course the users will have the choice to do it
manually.

7.2.3 Government
The web can and must be used internally. These can be achieved trough the following
services:
1. Government central network, in which local councils and government departments
will be interconnected.
2. Interactive Knowledge databases
3. Inter-governmental transactions.

7.2.4 Legislation
In the future government both the Greek-Cypriot and Turkish-Cypriot sections must vote and
create legislations that ensures :
1. The citizens privacy

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2. The businesses confidentiality


3. Intellectual Copyrights
4. No benefit frauds take place
5. All transactions are secure
6. All applications, systems and web sites are accessible for all
7. All electronic means of feedback to the citizens, including receipts of transactions are
official government documents and are valid throughout the Cyprus government.
8. No Cyber-crime takes place
9. Systems, applications and services are inline with the federal constitution and inline
with the European Union.

7.3 RFID Identity Cards & Smart Cards


Identity cards are a requirement for every citizen in Cyprus (both for Greek Cypriots and
Turkish-Cypriots) this I believe will continue in the new state.
Having said that the government would probably create new identity cards that would reflect
the new state.
Thus in the new identity cards the government could embed Radio frequency identification
(RFID) tags. RFID is a method of remotely storing and retrieving information and data using
RFID tags/transporters. (or other chip technologies)
Thus the data and information that could be stored in an RFID identity card could be:
1. National Identity information
2. Personal Information
3. Health information (e.g. blood type, or allergies)
4. Driver licence
5. Can be used as an immigration document to travel from one zone to the other
6. Can be used as a travel card and can be used in public transport.
The uses of a smart card are numerous and can adapt to every citizen or governmental
requirement.

7.4 Health Systems


A national health database and health management systems could largely benefit both the
citizens and the health authorities. Thus the health authorities can create the following:
1. A national databse system, that would function as a knowledge base and health related
issues repository.
2. A secure network in which hospitals, clinics, Gp’s and specialist are interconnected. This
will ease the communication and organisation of referred patients
3. A blood bank management system
All these projects can fully uplift the health services in Cyprus. The possibilities are immense,
e.g. doctors may be able to remotely diagnose a patients illness, doctors can refer patients
to specialist in their area more easily, doctors can find illness information and related health

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issues together with videos or pictures through a national health databse, or can at no time
retrieve information on available blood types and refer the patients to the nearest blood
clinics.

7.5 Schools Online


Currently, there is no significant use of technology in schools. The education and
technologies being used are of limited value and small in scale.
The government should create a network in which all schools are connected. This way a
knowledge repository can be created that would benefit, students, schools and staff.
Furthermore, school labs should be open outside school times in order for students to be able
to practise what they learn at schools with the use of technology. Furthermore the ministry of
Education should build portals for students and staff and should promote e-learning and
motivate learning with the use of technology. Also the government should radically enforce
the use of technology in the way modules are taught and the way students learn.
Furthermore, schools should lease or under special schemes provide computers to low
income students and or provide internet access freely at schools and through wireless
hotspots.

7.6 Biometric Passports


“Biometrics is the science and technology of authentication (i.e. establishing the identity of
an individual) by measuring the person's physiological or behavioral features. The term is
derived from the Greek words "bios" for life and "metron" for measure.”
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biometrics)
Thus an emerging technology such as this could be used in a number of ways. Last year the
Green line borders (Dead Zone- Further Reading http://kypros.org/Lefkosia/line.htm and
http://www.worldpress.org/Europe/1124.cfm) in a number of places in Cyprus have
opened up giving a hope of unification in the island. This however had a number of
drawbacks, such as identity theft, false identity representation and false immigration and
identity documents.
Thus the Cyprus government in order to prevent that form happening in the future could
invest in this new technology in which biometric photographs can be used to identify each
individual. Although no standards are currently in place, according to some circles and
experts biometrics could be a technology that will soon take over the digital world.
(http://www.ukpa.gov.uk/identity.asp)

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8 Deployment and Implementation challenges


Based on he above, I believe that based on the current situation, there are a number of
challenges that the new Government, will be faced with when planning for e-governance
This are focused on the range of:
1. Social
2. Economic
3. Political
4. Technological
To better identify these, a SWOT analysis follows.

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9 Cyprus, E-Governance SWOT


Strengths Weaknesses Opportunities Threats
Political 1. Inline with EU 1. Budget 1. External funding from EU 1. Misuse of
2. Modern Government Image 2. No internet legislation 2. Get citizens more involved technology
3. Better Government organisation available 3. Automation of decision 2. Large number
and easier management 3. IT skills currently making processes of political
missing from 4. Smoother government parties from
Government planning and monitoring both sites may
not agree

Social 1. Promote e-learning 1. More training needed 1. Increased employment 1. Greek and
2. Increase Public awareness of IT 2. Technophobe culture 2. Life long learning Turkish conflict
3. Increase in knowledge and skills 3. Bi-lingual barriers 3. Promotion of internet history
4. Make citizen-government interaction 4. Cultural and religion services 2. Social
simpler diversity 4. Better education resistance
5. Skill shortage standards 3. Privacy and
6. Competition with confidentiality
private sector issues.

Economic 1. External Funding 1. Limited budget (initially) 1. Increase in revenue 1. Benefit fraud
2. Coalition with private sector 2. Private sector 2. Cost efficiency 2. Corruption
3. Private funding competition 3. Increase in government
and businesses
interaction

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Technological 1. Internet, motivating factor 1. Shortage of skilled 1. Use of hardware donated 1. Constant
2. Numerous projects personnel from the private sector changing of
3. New business creation 2. High costs of 2. Coalition with EU technology
4. Creation of Knowledge bases technology countries 2. Constant
3. Shortage of IT 3. Investment of private changing of
standards sector technology in standards
4. Cost of internet government 3. Constant
changing of
government
and citizen
requirements

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10 Implementation
Thus, form the above we can see the threats and weaknesses that the new government
could expect when attempting to implement an e-governance. Having said that, I believe that
if the government decides eventually to implement e-governance schemes; it has to do so
based on a strategy and a framework of action.
This report however will not deal in detail of how each section of e-governance will be
implemented, due to the fact that this report is based on future conditions that in case may
never take place. Thus I will recommend a strategy that is not solely based on the Ana Plan
but can also be used in other more general situations.
However it is important that every government in this case a bi-zonal federation, focuses on
a set of goals or “success factors” that will help the transformation process to run smoothly.
These are:
1. Political solidity and constitutional awareness
2. Citizen to Government trust
3. Cultural identity, one united Cyprus or a different zonal identities, Greek-Cypriots and
Turkish-Cypriots, or just Cypriots?
4. Economic stability and level of education and public skill sets
Thus the central government has to initially build the foundation of e-governance, and steadily
implement the e-governance maturity model. This can be achieved by first setting an overall
goal, and then build the tasks that are needed to achieving that task. In detail the government
has to determine:
1. The projects that when combined can lead to the final objective.
2. Costs and benefits
3. Plans
4. Boundaries
5. Constraints
In real time conditions I believe that the central government should follow the following
strategy:
1. Set and goals and create projects in local councils of each zone
2. Combine projects of each local council in each zone to achieve the zone objective
3. Combine the zone’s projects to achieve the overall government e-governance vision.
This can be summarised in the model below:

Council 1 Council 3 Council 1 Council 3

Council 2 Council 4 Council 2 Council 4


Greek-Cypriot Zone Projects Federation Turkish-Cypriot Zone Projects
E-Governance Objectives

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11 Review and Conclusion

11.1 Review
If the final solution of Cyprus is indeed a bi-zonal and bi-communal federation then I believe
that the recommendations found in this report would benefit both parties. Although, a project
such as this could not be confined in a 4000 word essay, but it would rather need years and
years of study and trial and error, it is a start that would give readers an overall idea of the
current affairs in Cyprus in terms of technology in government. A bi-zonal or bi-communal
country does not mean that a wall will be build between the two communities, but rather the
two communities will be working towards a common goal. Thus is I think, my implementation
recommendation could be easily applied. Local councils of each zone should work for the
goal of each zone and each zone should work to achieve the overall government objectives.
Thus based on the maturity model (see appendix) both communities can initially start small,
the first steps would be making their web sites more dynamic and begin offering services
preferably in the local government sector first and the progress to the zone sector and lastly
on the main government sector.
The tools and technology are there, and more affordable than ever before, there is a large
number of IT specialist currently in Cyprus, and this were perhaps the government will face
problems, the competition with the private sector, in terms of skillsets.
The government though should take advantage of the private sector. It should create
initiatives in which businesses in the private sector are actively involved and aid the
government in achieving its objectives.
People in Cyprus, at least middle aged adults and or pensioners are technophobes and a
big number of that population especially in rural areas, does not own and cannot use a
computer. Thus evidence of digital divide are very clear in these areas. This were both zones
should strive to break that gap by raising the public’s awareness on technology and the
electronic delivery of services and ensure that all citizens clearly understand the benefits ICT
can offer.
There are a numbers of ways to integrate technology in government; and the case studies I
have looked at are just a small “piece of the pie”. Although Cyprus is really behind in this
sector, that is not necessarily bad. Because the government could benefit from the projects of
other countries, seek advice and see paradigms of the technologies in use, and most
importantly learn from other peoples mistakes. There’s no reason for the government to “re-
invent the wheel”, countries in the EU and other countries have used the technology before,
the costs are there, the studies both technological and social exist, thus, I think the Cyprus
government should make full use of these and adapt them to bi-communal, bi-zonal state.

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11.2 Conclusion
This report’s main objective was to examine, ways in which a future united Cyprus
government based on a bi-zonal, bi-communal plan, could offer government services
electronically, to citizens, to business, and internally to government.
This was based on Gartner’s e-governance four phase maturity model. Through several
considerations I came to the conclusion that Cyprus, the Greek-Cypriot part, is still in phase
one of the model, as for the Turkish-Cypriot part, its more or less in the same level. Thus, this
would be a difficult change, and considering the number of barriers, already present, as
shown in the SWOT analysis, this may even take up to ten years or more to be implemented.
I have suggested a number of ways in which e-governance could be implemented in Cyprus,
but the main recommendation would be to start small, preferably on the web and slowly
progress into larger and larger projects.

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12 Appendix

12.1 Abstracts from the Anan Plan


Article 2
The United Cyprus Republic, its federal government, and
its constituent states:
1. The status and relationship of the United Cyprus Republic, its federal
government, and its constituent states, is modeled on the status and
relationship of Switzerland, its federal government, and its cantons.
Accordingly:
a. The United Cyprus Republic is an independent state in the form of an
indissoluble partnership, with a federal government and two equal
constituent states, the Greek Cypriot State and the Turkish Cypriot
State. Cyprus is a member of the United Nations and has a single
international legal personality and sovereignty. The United Cyprus
Republic is organised under its Constitution in accordance with the
basic principles of rule of law, democracy, representative republican
government, political equality, bi-zonality, and the equal status of the
constituent states.
b. The federal government sovereignly exercises the powers specified
in the Constitution, which shall ensure that Cyprus can speak and act
with one voice internationally and in the European Union, fulfill its

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8 obligations as a European Union member state, and protect its


integrity, borders, resources and ancient heritage.
c. The constituent states are of equal status. Within the limits of the
Constitution, they sovereignly exercise all powers not vested by the
Constitution in the federal government, organizing themselves freely
under their own Constitutions.
2. The constituent states shall cooperate and coordinate with each other
and with the federal government, including through Cooperation
Agreements, as well as through Constitutional Laws approved by the
federal Parliament and both constituent state legislatures. In particular,
the constituent states shall participate in the formulation and
implementation of policy in external relations and European Union
relations on matters within their sphere of competence, in accordance
with Cooperation Agreements modeled on the Belgian example. The
constituent states may have commercial and cultural relations with the
outside world in conformity with the Constitution.
3. The federal government and the constituent states shall fully respect and
not infringe upon the powers and functions of each other. There shall be
no hierarchy between federal and constituent state laws. Any act in
contravention of the Constitution shall be null and void.
4. The Constitution of the United Cyprus Republic may be amended by
separate majority of the voters of each constituent state in accordance
with the specific provisions of the Constitution.

Further reading: http://www.cyprus-un-plan.org/

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13 References

1. Michiel Backus April 2001, E-governance


2. http://www.ftpiicd.org/files/research/reports/report3.pdf
3. http://www.cyprus-un-plan.org/),
4. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_forms_of_government
5. http://www.cyprus.gov.cy/cyphome/govhome.nsf/Main?OpenFrameSet
6. http://portal.unesco.org/ci/en/ev.php-
URL_ID=3038&URL_DO=DO_TOPIC&URL_SECTION=201.html)
7. http://www.direct.gov.uk/QuickFind/DoItOnline/DoItOnlineCategory/fs/en
8. http://www.cyberwise.ca/index.htm
9. http://www.cybertip.ca/en/cybertip/)
10. http://kypros.org/Lefkosia/line.htm
11. http://www.worldpress.org/Europe/1124.cfm

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