Australian Information Industry Association (AIIA) chief executive, Ian Birks, has described the National Digital Economy Strategy (NDES) as “pretty bold and visionary”.
Birks said, “You don’t see a lot of that in politics. It has to be applauded. Setting KPIs for 2020 in different areas is quite courageous.
“I think it is what industry wants and needs and it is now up to industry to work with the government to get to those targets set for 2020.
“If anything it is better than what I expected.”
Birks said the AIIA had been talking to the government about the digital economy for the past about how to improve digital strategy. The AIIA’s key inputs were that the strategy must be measurable and should also build early success on key NBN sites.
While Birks couldn’t identify anything that was missing from the strategy he said that it was going to be a challenge for Communications Minister, Stephen Conroy, to get all the parts of government to come online with his vision. By that he meant health, education and other departments.
To date the Opposition has simply opposed the National Broadband Network (NBN) and continually stated it will scarp it should it come to government.
Given his complete support for the SDtrategy Birks said it would be nice to see an intelligent response from the Opposition. “I suspect its response will be around implementation and cost. But it would be nice to see an intelligent conversation about the NBN as we go forward.
“Hopefully, some of the points sociring that’s been going on in the NBN debate will be put to rest by the fact the government has set a series of targets for 2020.
“But what I want to emphasise here is that all parts of the private sector and industry should be building the vision of the digital economy in 2020 for their own organisations and sectors.
“It has been disappointing that, so far, that we haven’t seen other industry sectors positioning themselves in the digital economy in 2020.
What the government has done is provide a blueprint, a plan for the digital economy in 2020. What each Australian company needs to do is take that work out where they want they want tobe in the digital economy in 2020 – how it will best work for them.”