The World Government Summit (WGS) 2017 has announced it has received thousands of nominations in the first edition of the World GovTechioneers Race.
The contest was launched in December 2016 to encourage global government entities to enhance their services, implement smart government initiatives, and develop partnerships to identify innovative solutions to challenges facing the world.
In line with the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to shape the future and stimulate technological innovation in the UAE and abroad, the competition includes three main categories: Blockchain Virtual GovHack, Best m-Government Service, and Best Emerging Technologies in Government.
The competition highlights leading projects in the fields of robotics, artificial intelligence, drones, statistical data, nanotechnology, autonomous cars, blockchain transactions, virtual reality, and 3-D printing.
The winners of the World GovTechioneers Race, selected by an impartial judging panel, will be announced during the World Government Summit set to run in Dubai from February 12 to 14, 2017.
Her Excellency Hessa Essa Buhumaid, Assistant Director General for Government Services and Leadership at the Ministry of Cabinet Affairs and The Future, said: “The World GovTechioneers Race has received a high uptake from across the globe, reflecting the great international interest in developing government work through utilising latest technologies to serve societies.”
She added: “Global challenges force governments and their service channels to forecast the future and stay ahead of possible changes. Recognising talent and innovation is crucial for enriching the global knowledge landscape and enhancing the quality of government services.”
Blockchain Virtual GovHack
The global virtual blockchain hackathon targets students and start-ups from across the world that experiment with new technologies to produce outstanding applications.
The ultimate winner will bag USD100,000 while the runner-up receives USD30,000 and the second runner-up USD20,000.
The hackathon witnessed the participation of 1,011 competitors from 41 countries, of whom 856 qualified for the finals, presenting 131 projects and ideas in total. In addition, 244 competitors participated in virtual technical sessions on blockchain.
The United States topped the list with 40 projects, followed by India with 29, Canada and Australia with 13 each, the UAE with nine projects, while Spain and Germany notched up seven and six respectively.
Participating projects aimed to increase the security of smart city systems, facilitate patient data management through digital medical records, detect online fraud cases, improve paper printing and find innovative personal ID solutions.
Best m-Government Service Award
The second category of the World GovTechioneers Race features the best mobile applications that enhance the quality of life and increase the efficiency of government work across nine sub-categories - health, education, environment, social affairs, safety and security, tourism, economy and commerce, transportation and infrastructure, and one-stop app.
The category received 2,456 submissions from 62 countries, 15 of whom are Arab nations.
Of these, the UAE accounted for 218 entries, other Arab countries for 322, and the rest of the world for 1,906 entries.
The United States ranked first with 388 applications, followed by Australia with 328, Hong Kong with 96, Singapore with 81, and the UK with 64 submissions.
Best Emerging Technologies in Government Award
The third category in the race recognizes governments that are experimenting with emerging technologies to provide more efficient and effective services to their citizens, and have proven results in adding greater public value and transforming the lives of people.
The World Government Summit 2017 will attract more than 4,000 personalities from 139 countries, and feature 150 speakers over 114 sessions.
The attendees include VIPs and senior experts from the public and private sectors globally, ministers, decision makers, CEOs, innovators, officials, experts, entrepreneurs, academics, and university students.