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Philippines launches its National ICT Ecosystem Framework

The Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) partnered with a global non-profit organisation to develop a central consolidating framework for the process of ICT policy formulation and governance.

According to a recent press release, the National ICT Ecosystem Framework (NICTEF) was launched on 21 February 2019 to address the absence of a strategic roadmap for the country’s ICT policy formulation.

Acting DICT Secretary Eliseo M. Rio, together with the Chief Regional Director of the Asia-Pacific Regional Bureau of the non-profit organisation, led the ceremonial unveiling of the framework.

The Framework

NICTEF, the framework, is dubbed as the government’s response to the growing need for an authoritative reference encompassing the entirety of the ICT agenda.

It is a comprehensive blueprint that will harmonise the country’s ICT data. It, thereby, allows the Department to transform raw data to valuable information.

Moreover, it aims to serve as a viewfinder and a strategic compass directing responses to ICT challenges.

The idea of the framework is to situate ICT data and its potential applications in an organised framework that is sensitive to a society’s dynamic nature.

It is the key to developing a knowledge society designed to maximise the benefits of open governance, magnify the advantages of industry applications and multiply the opportunities of skills development.

The framework has six strategic thrusts. These are:

  1. Participatory e-Governance
  2. Industry and Countryside Development
  3. ICT User Protection and Information Security
  4. Improved Public Links and Connectivity
  5. Resource Sharing and Capacity Building throughout ICT
  6. Enabling & Sustainable ICT Environment

It will serve as means towards a larger goal and was reported as a successor to the Philippine Digital Strategy initiative from 2011 to 2016.

The Implementation

Currently, the NICTEF is still an evolving framework, with a series of regional consultations being drawn to manifest best practices and distinct policy approaches for a holistic framework development.

In order to effectively respond and cater to the needs of the countryside, sub-committees will be formed and created.

Several training workshops were given to civil servants in order to broaden their understanding of the principles that underpin the architecture and continued evolution of the internet.

The strong sense of collaboration focused on bridging the digital gap makes NICTEF a truly living document.

An example to neighbours

Through NICTEF, all the groups involved will be able to show the Asia-Pacific region how vital participatory governance is in this part of the world.

The Philippine government’s commitment to following the multi-stakeholder model in the development of NICTEF is an exemplary approach, according to the Chief Regional Director of the Asia-Pacific Regional Bureau of the non-profit organisation.

He added that it is a model best practice for other countries to consider in their policy development processes.

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