UN organises Public Service Awards ceremony in UAE

UN organises Public Service Awards ceremony in UAE

UN organises Public Service Awards ceremony in UAE

DUBAI, 13th December, 2021 – The United Nations organised a ceremony honoring winners of the United Nations Public Service Awards (UNPSA), the most prestigious international award for public service, in UAE on Monday; honoring 17 winning initiatives in various fields of public service for 2020 and 2021 awards.

The selection of the UAE to organise this prestigious international event, coinciding with the celebration of its Golden Jubilee, reflects its leading position worldwide.

It further highlights the UN’s appreciation of the progress achieved by the UAE government in various fields as well as its global role in sharing knowledge, experiences and the best practices in the field of future government, developed over the past 50 years.

The ceremony was attended by Mohammad bin Abdullah Al Gergawi, Minister of Cabinet Affairs; Ohood bint Khalfan Al Roumi, Minister of State for Government Development and The Future; Catherine Pollard, the United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Management Strategy, Policy and Compliance; and Abdullah Nasser Lootah, Director General of Prime Minister’s Office in the Ministry of Cabinet Affairs.

Ohood Al Roumi: UAE government is committed to promote global cooperation achieving SDGs

In a keynote speech, Ohood bint Khalfan Al Roumi, Minister of State for Government Development and The Future, affirmed that the UAE government is committed to promoting cooperation and enhancing partnerships to achieve sustainable development goals (SDGs), in line with the directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, to support international efforts and enable governments to build a better future.

Al Roumi added that future readiness is a necessity for governments that seek to create a better future of its people, and that the opportunities and challenges facing governments today are different from those of the past.

She also stressed that the COVID-19 pandemic has changed several notions and set multiple future trends.

Catherine Pollard: the UN calls for global solidarity as we build back better together

Catherine Pollard stated that, “The COVID-19 pandemic demonstrated to the world the vital role that public servants play in ensuring service delivery, even in times of immense disruption and crisis.

This year, as we meet to host the first UN Public Service Awards Ceremony since the onset of the pandemic, we have a moment to both thank public servants everywhere for their continued work.

Pollard also said; “The United Nations calls for global solidarity as we build back better together, and we call on you to learn from each other as we work towards our collective Sustainable Development Goals.

” She further extended her appreciation for the UAE government for hosting the event.

“As we work in global solidarity to implement the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, sharing knowledge and innovation is critical.

to enhance our chances of reaching the SDGs,” she added.

The UN awarded 10 winners for the UNPSA 2021.

Two initiatives won the “Fostering innovation to deliver inclusive and equitable services for all” category, namely the Hands-on Mobile ICT Classes Project of Ghana Library Authority and the Encouraging Innovation to Deliver Inclusive and Equal Services to All of Kazakhstan.

Five initiatives won the “Enhancing the effectiveness of public institutions” category, namely Water Sector Trust Fund of Kenya with the Output-based aid programme initiative, the Chungcheongnam-do of the Republic of Korea with Clean marine environment initiative, Department of Sustainable Development of Romania with the initiatives to strengthen the effectiveness of Romanian institutions and PCSD to reach SDGs, Municipio de Coatzacoalcos, Mexico with the initiative Coatzabierto – Integral strategy of open government and intelligent city, and the Automobile Club d’Italia, ACI mobility information system (Luceverde).

For Category 3 on promoting gender-responsive public services to achieve the SDGs, two initiatives won the award, namely the Ministry of disaster management and relief of Bangladesh with Women empowerment in cyclone preparedness programme (CPP) and the superintendence of sports in the state of Bahia, Brazil; sports in the city initiative.

For Category 4 on institutional preparedness and response in times of crisis, the Department of disease control of Thailand won the award for its initiative intelligent & sustainable public health emergency system.

Innovating inclusive and equitable services for all

For 2021 awards, the Hands-on Mobile ICT Classes Project of Ghana Library Authority won the first category, “Fostering innovation to deliver inclusive and equitable services for all including through digital transformation,” that contributed to the implementation of the 4th goal of the UN 2030 SDGs.

The project was implemented to address the growing need in Ghana for skilled workers capable of harnessing technology for shaping the future by bringing hands-on mobile computer classes to the remote and under-resourced schools.

The idea was to equip a van with low-power laptop computers, solar panels, and an internet modem to visit under-resourced schools to conduct practical computer classes.

Services to All

The initiative on “Encouraging Innovation to Deliver Inclusive and Equal Services to All” launched by the “Government for Citizens” in Kazakhstan was also a winner of the same category.

It created conditions for delivering high-quality government services to all segments of the population based on the actual needs of each region, contributing to achieving the SDGs ninth goal.

Kazakhstanis are now able to receive 95 percent of all public services through the digital public service centers designed on the principle of a single window, which provided more than 132 million government services through 350 centers across Kazakhstan.

It also launched the mobile government service centers initiative to reach all regions and serve society members, providing more than 328,000 services through more than 9,000 visits.

Enhancing the effectiveness of public institutions

The Water Sector Trust Fund of Kenya won the second category of the UNPSA “Enhancing the effectiveness of public institutions to reach the SDGs” by launching the “Output-Based Aid Programme” initiative helping it reach the SDGs sixth goal Nations by promoting the partnerships of the aid program managed, and providing integrated subsidies to finance projects implemented by water service providers.

In addition to supporting 60 percent of the commercial loan, and facilitating installments payments to support water services, enabling 130,000 people living in low-income areas were able to access clean water and sanitation.

Clean Marine Environment

The “Clean Marine Environment Initiative”, launched by Chungcheong-do in South Korea, was also recognised under the second category.

The initiative aimed to address existing and future marine waste and contribute to achieving the 14th SDG by developing a 3-level response plan that starts with preventing the generation, collection and storage of marine waste, transportation and disposal of waste through public-private partnerships, and with the help of NGOs and people.

Strengthening the effectiveness of institutions

“Strengthening the effectiveness of Romanian institutions and PCSD to reach SDGs” plan launched by the Department of Sustainable Development of Romania was announced as a winner.

Launched in 2018, the ‘StrengthRO–SDGs’ initiative aims to promote the implementation of the SDGs by enhancing the role of the Romanian government through engagement and communication of the Department of Sustainable Development in partnership with government entities, business leaders and community institutions.

Open government and intelligent city

Another winner under the second category is the “Integral strategy of open government and intelligent city” developed by the Coatzabierto Municipality in Mexico.

Its goal is to modernise the digital infrastructure and develop a smart city that provides a comprehensive platform for government services and contributes to achieving a set of sustainable development goals, primarily the 4th, 5th, 8th, 9th, and 16th goals.

The initiative focuses on applying governance practices by promoting digital transformation towards becoming a 100 percent digital government, providing services 24/7 and reducing 40 percent of processing time.

Green Light

The “ACI mobility information system (Luceverde) initiative”, developed by the Automobile Club d’Italia, also won the second category award.

The initiative aims to provide real-time, GPS-based information for multi-modal mobility, thus achieving the 11th SDG.

Delivered through different channels: web radio, a mobile application, website, social media channels such as Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and Telegram, a contact center, and local radio and TV stations.

The initiative contributed to enabling more than 3 million people to access 100 radio stations, 6 television channels, 60 live television broadcasts, 700 video bulletins, 24,000 written pamphlets, 500 live broadcasts and 20 million posts on social media to meet various needs.

Promoting gender-responsive public services to achieve the SDGs

Bangladesh’s Ministry of disaster management and relief’s initiative, “Women empowerment in cyclone preparedness programme (CPP)” won the third category, promoting gender-responsive public services to achieve the SDGs.

The initiative supports government efforts to achieve the 5th goal of the UN SDGs 2030 and aims to train female volunteers on addressing natural disasters, thus achieving gender equality in this field.

Sports in the City

The “Sports in the City” initiative, launched by the Superintendence of sports in the state of Bahia, Brazil to achieve the 1st, 3rd, 5th, 10th, 16th SDGs, was honored in this category.

The initiative aims to provide easier access to sport as a form of social inclusion to achieve gender balance.

It also provides free football lessons for women in various regions and enhance the use of leisure time towards reducing the current gap in government service.

Institutional preparedness and response in times of crisis

The “Intelligent and sustainable public health emergency system” initiative, launched by the Thailand Department of Disease Control (DDC), won the category of institutional preparedness and response in times of crisis.

The system seeks to achieve the 3rd and 17th goals of the SDGs, by enhancing the expertise of epidemiologists in dealing with emergency and health threats.

The initiative enhances the response to emergency and health threats by establishing more than 1,000 Surveillance Rapid Response Team (SRRT), to monitor health risks, manage public health emergencies and deploy effective plans to mitigate risk, through identifying 5 target groups to prevent them from contacting communicable diseases.

2020 winners

The UNPSA for 2020 honoured 7 winners; 3 of which were in the category of providing comprehensive and equitable services for all, namely the “HYO Policy” introduced by the Seongdong District Office in South Korea, the Automatic Social Energy Tariff initiative presented by the Administrative Modernisation Agency and the Directorate-General of Energy and Geology of Portugal, and the Preparatory course for students admission into reference technical school presented by Prefeitura do Jaboatão dos Guararapes of Brazil.

For Category 2 on Promoting integrated mechanisms for sustainable development, the winner was Consejo Nuevo León para la Planeación Estratégica of Mexico.

For Category 3 on Developing transparent and accountable public institutions, the winner was the Ministry of Land of Bangladesh with the e-Mutation initiative.

For Category 4 on Promoting digital transformation in public-sector institutions, 2 winners were announced, namely North East Region Ministry of Basic Education, ICT Integration into Teaching and Learning (e- Thuto), Botswana; and Dirección General de Transformación Digital de la Administración de Justicia, Digital Justice: 360 vision of security, Spain.

Providing comprehensive and equitable services for all

Winning the 2020 category of providing comprehensive and equitable services for all, the “HYO Policy” introduced by the Seongdong District Office in South Korea aims to provide more accessible healthcare services.

The ‘HYO Team’, composed of doctors and nurses, pays home visits to elderly citizens to provide health checkups, chronic disease management, depression and dementia management, and financial support for medical bills.

Around quarter the number of elderly have registered in the programme, and 6.

8 percent registered in the intensive programme.

Of those registered, 75 percent with diabetes have controlled the disease, their social relationships rates have risen from 23.

9 percent to 31.

6 percent, while their depression rates have fallen to 17.

7 percent.

Energy Tariff

The Administrative Modernisation Agency and the Directorate-General of Energy and Geology in Portugal also won the category for its “Automatic Social Energy Tariff”.

The initiative aims to address the low uptake rate of the “Social Energy Tariff” which the Portuguese government operated in 2010 to ease the burden of energy bills.

The team developed a platform that automates the process of tariff application; the Government proactively checks for eligibility and automatically attributes a social tariff.

According to evaluations provided, the number of beneficiaries increased from 4 percent to about 20 percent of all the households in Portugal, representing an overall discount of over 85 million euros on their bills.

Promoting Technical Education

Encouraging middle school students to access and attend secondary level technical schools, The Jaboatão Prepara: preparatory course for students’ admission into reference technical schools launched by Brazil’s Prefeitura Do Jaboatão Dos Guararapes also won the category award.

In 2015, the program targeted students and offered professional guidance and free preparatory course support to help them navigate the selection and federal processes to access technical schools that are otherwise out of reach.

It has significantly boosted the number of district students selected by technical schools to more than 1,500 between 2015 and 2018.

In 2018, out of the 2,000 students enrolled in Prepara, 781 applied for the admission test, 88 percent of whom were approved.

In addition, 631 were accepted in State Technical Schools and 60 to Federal Technical Institutes.

Furthermore, the drop-out rate after middle school fell by 27 percent, below Brazil’s national average.

Integrated Mechanisms for Sustainable Development

In the category of ensuring integrated mechanisms for sustainable development, the “Consejo Nuevo León para la Planeación Estratégica” was the winner.

The plan of action worked on preparing a 15-year strategic plan to promote sustainable development and ensure the general well-being of the citizens of Nuevo Leon by meeting their needs.

The strategic plan works in six key areas: human development, sustainable development, economic development, security and justice, effective government, and public finance.

The council facilitates cross-sector collaboration between key stakeholders to solve the state’s most pressing problems.

Developing Transparent and Accountable Public Institutions

The Ministry of Land of Bangladesh won the category of developing transparent and accountable public institutions for the initiative to “Implement the e-Mutation”.

E-mutation was established to provide a digital mechanism for mutation applications that allow more efficient application, tracking of the process, and delivery of timely services.

It aims to ensure transparency and accountability in the process, increase efficiency, and ensure a system that is fair to all citizens, particularly the most vulnerable including the illiterate, women, older persons and the poor.

Promoting Digital Transformation in the Public Sector

Botswana’s Northeast Region Ministry of Basic Education’s “ICT Integration into Teaching and Learning (e-Thuto)” program won the Promoting Digital Transformation in the Public Sector category.

The program aims to enhance connectivity, promote a culture of lifelong learning and accelerate innovation to develop knowledge-based systems while delivering government services electronically.

The region introduced ICT Integration into teaching and learning by developing a web-based interactive platform (e-Thuto) consisting of e-learning and data management modules.

Digital Justice

Also hailed as category winner is Spain’s Dirección General de Transformación Digital developed by the Ministry of Justice, “La visión 360º de la Seguridad”.

The Ministry developed the Digital Justice: 360 vision of security for accessing electronic legal proceedings, whose implementation promoted complete electronic processing of judicial files with greater security.

The processing of a judicial procedure is carried out electronically for the duration of the life cycle of a judicial procedure.

Since its implementation, complete electronic processing of judicial files has been achieved, with greater security through elements such as secure electronic signatures and secure VPNs being used to ensure confidentiality of information.

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