Interoperability data for Latvia, 2012 Back to country selection

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1. Interoperability as a strategic goal
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This qualitative indicator examines whether Interoperability is recognized as a strategic priority, a fact which holds truth if the latter is explicitly mentioned in either one of the national e-Government, Interoperability, local e-Government, Digital Planning, IT or Information Society (etc.) strategies or other strategic framework of the country. In this case it is awarded the value “Yes”; otherwise the value “No”. In case there is no relevant information, the indicator is granted the value “Unknown”. A suitable justification is also provided depending on the case.

1.1. Strategic Priority on Interoperability Yes

Latvia is one of the countries of the European Union where a document such as a national e-Government Plan or Strategy is indeed present, a separate, although an explicit strategy for interoperability such as a National Interoperability framework does not exist. However, the e-Government Strategy in Latvia is based to a great extent on the principles of cooperation and interoperability [1]. On 18 May 2011, the Cabinet of Ministers approves the 'Electronic Government Development Plan for 2011-2013', in which interoperability is a key-factor, as it lays down measures to: reduce the administrative burden; increase efficiency of the organizational process in the Public Administration; develop electronic services tailored to the needs of the population and enterprises; develop state information systems and ICT infrastructure; foster internet access; and facilitate public involvement in the policy-making process [2].

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This indicator investigates the status of a National Interoperability Strategy. The latter may be absent, and thus “Not planned”, “Planned”, “Under development” or already “Published”. In case no information is available, the National Interoperability Strategy Status is attributed the value “Unknown”.

1.2. National Interoperability Strategy Status Not planned
2. National Interoperability Frameworks
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National Interoperability Frameworks prove that a country is interoperability-aware and pose as the cornerstone for the resolution of interoperability issues in the public sector and the provision of one-stop, fully electronic services to businesses and citizens. In this context, this indicator examines the status of a National Interoperability Framework by aggregating information on a series of relevant aspects, namely title, version, release date, focus/scope, audience, status and responsible agency.

2.1. National Interoperability Framework Status
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2.1.1. Title Not applicable
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2.1.2. Version Not applicable
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2.1.3. Release Date Not applicable
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2.1.4. Focus / Scope Unknown
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2.1.5. Audience Government sector, Business sector
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2.1.6. Status Under development

There is no defined Latvian interoperability framework or special conception or programs for interoperability, but there are several policy planning documents, which promote interoperability: Latvia’s eGovernment Conception, Latvia’s eGovernment Development Programme 2005-2009 and others.

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2.1.7. Responsible Agency The Ministry of Regional Development and Local Government of the Republic of Latvia (http://www.raplm.gov.lv/pub/)
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This qualitative metric investigates whether a country’s National Interoperability Framework is harmonized with the European Interoperability Framework (EIF), that has been issued by the IDABC (“Interoperable Delivery of European e-Government Services to Public Administrations, Businesses and Citizens”) initiative, or not.
The indicator is applicable when a country’s NIF has already been published. In case the country’s NIF is in line with the European Interoperability Framework, the indicator is awarded the value ”Yes” ; otherwise the value “No”.  In case there is no relevant information, the indicator is granted the value “Unknown”. A suitable justification is also provided depending on the case.

2.2. Compatibility of National Interoperability Framework with the European Interoperability Framework Not applicable
3. Interoperability Projects and Activities
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This indicator brings the evaluation of interoperability efforts down to the practical level and rates the National Interoperability-related Activity of a country by means of the number of relevant projects of national or local scope. These are mainly e-Government projects, where interconnection, integration or interoperability have a central role. Both ongoing and completed projects are taken into consideration. The indicator is measured in a qualitative four level scale including the levels “Non-existent”, “Low/limited”, “Moderate” and “High”. A quite descriptive but non-exhaustive list of national interoperability-related projects is also provided, in order to offer a more clear view on the relevant activities.Values:

  • Non-existent: no projects
  • Low: 1-5 projects
  • Moderate: 6-20 projects
  • High: over 20 projects
3.1. Number of interoperability-related projects of local or national scope Low

National-Public Administration Portal:

  • Latvian Official Portal (Latvija.lv), aim of the Portal is to provide people in Latvia and abroad with access to Internet resources of Latvian state institutions and with centralized access to electronic services provided by different institutions [2].

 


E-Government Backbone:

  • ISIS (Integrated State Information System) is a standardized shared service platform (https://ivis.eps.gov.lv/ivisportal/) which also serves as a backbone system for unified state service portal Latvija.lv (http://www.latvia.lv). Its aim is to implement electronic services and the national electronic government implementation [2].

Research & Education Network: -


Environmental Geoportal: EU-Funded


Marine Data Management Infrastructure: EU-Funded


Legislation & e-Justice System: -

 

e-Health System: -


e-Tax Portal & Infrastructure: 

  • RETA RIGA (Real estate tax e-administration in Riga) through which now residents can receive tax payment statements in electronic form and check the balance of their tax-payer’s account (http://www.riga.lv) [4].

Other projects:

  • Jekabpils City Council Residential and Business e-Services, aims to improve public knowledge of the use of IT and the quality and accessibility of e-Services. In addition, the project seeks to perfect administrative capability for implementing e-Government while facilitating the use of e-Services by residents and entrepreneurs. The collaboration ability of services for citizens, businesses and public administrations demonstrates the project’s contribution to the field of interoperability in Latvia. (http://www.jekabpils.lv) [3].
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This metric captures the degree of a country’s engagement with EU research and development (R&D) activities, and provides therefore an indication of the number of EU-funded interoperability-related projects in which the country participates. Both ongoing and completed research projects are taken into consideration. The same four level qualitative scale is used in this case as well, while an indicative list of EU-funded projects is also included. Values:

  • Non-existent: no projects
  • Low: 1-5 projects
  • Medium: 6-20 projects
  • High: over 20 projects
3.2. Number of EU-funded interoperability-related projects Moderate
3.2.1. Indicative projects
  • NET-EUCEN (European Network for Enhanced User Centricity in eGovernment, April 2010 - ) to create, animate and manage a working network of stakeholders in the Governance, User Centricity and Policy Modelling domains belonging to all European countries, and covering the whole range of Services for Users (S4U), and with the aim, among others, to identify opportunities for interoperability and standardization in the aforementioned domains, raise awareness, and provide guidelines and recommendations (http://www.net-eucen.org/) [5].
  • Plan4all (Plan4all geoportal) focusing on the harmonization of spatial planning data and metadata according to the principles of the INSPIRE Directive (http://www.plan4all.eu/) [6].
  • SeaDataNet (Pan-European Infrastructure for Ocean and Marine Data Management, April 2006 – March 2011), aiming to develop an efficient distributed Pan-European Marine Data Management Infrastructure for managing large and diverse marine research data sets, and to network the existing professional data centers of 35 countries, active in data collection, and provide integrated databases of standardized quality on-line (http://www.seadatanet.org/) [7].
  • SeaDataNet II (Pan-European infrastructure for ocean and marine data management, Oct 2011- Sept 2015) aiming to upgrade the present SeaDataNet infrastructure into an operationally robust and state-of-the-art Pan-European infrastructure for providing up-to-date and high quality access to ocean and marine metadata, data and data products originating from data acquisition activities by all engaged coastal states, by setting, adopting and promoting common data management standards and by realising technical and semantic interoperability with other relevant data management systems and initiatives on behalf of science, environmental management, policy making, and economy (http://www.seadatanet.org/) [8].
  • CLARIN (Common language resources and technology infrastructure, Jan 2008 – June 2011), with the goal to develop and operate a shared distributed infrastructure, making available language resources and technology to the humanities and social sciences research communities, based on data and interoperability standards (http://www.clarin.eu/external/) [9].
  • BALTICGRID-II (Baltic Grid second phase, May 2008 – April 2010) aiming to increase the impact, adoption and reach, and to further improve the support of services and users of the recently created e-Infrastructure in the Baltic States. (http://www.balticgrid.org/) [10].
  • GEO-SEAS (Pan-european infrastructure for management of marine and ocean geological and geophysical data, May 2009 – Oct 2012), to effect a major and significant improvement in the overview and access to marine geological and geophysical data and data-products from national geological surveys and research institutes in Europe by upgrading and interconnecting their present infrastructures, and adopting the SeaDataNet interoperability principles, architecture and components wherever possible to avoid duplicative effort (http://www.geo-seas.eu/) [11].
  • GMOS (Global Mercury Observation System, Nov 2010 – Oct 2015), aiming to develop a coordinated global observation system for mercury able to provide temporal and spatial distributions of mercury concentrations in ambient air and precipitation over land and over surface waters at different altitudes and latitudes around the world. (http://www.gmos.eu/) [12].
4. National Interoperability Practices
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This metric provides an indication of the number of interoperability cases with a good practice label that have been implemented by a country. These are projects and other activities that have resulted in the development of innovative, flexible and reconfigurable interoperability solutions with an appreciable impact in terms of users’ uptake, a series of articulated benefits (e.g. managerial, financial, cultural etc.), and a number of patterns and components that may be either reused in other activities within the country or in other countries, or that can be exploited for educational and/or benchmarking purposes. Values:

  • Non-existent: no cases
  • Low: 1-5 cases
  • Medium: 6-20 cases
  • High: over 20 cases
4.1. Number of Interoperability Cases with Good Practice Label Low
  • Jekabpils City Council Residential and Business e-Services, aim to improve public knowledge of the use of IT and the quality and accessibility of e-Services. In addition, the project seeks to perfect administrative capability for implementing e-Government while facilitating the use of e-Services by residents and entrepreneurs. The collaboration ability of services for citizens, businesses and public administrations demonstrates the project’s contribution to the field of interoperability in Latvia. (http://www.jekabpils.lv) [3]. (Good Practice Label 2007)
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In the frame of this indicator, one interoperability case with a good practice label is selected as the most important or indicative one and is described with regard to a series of aspects including title, status, interoperability aspects covered and impact.

4.2. Best Interoperability Practice
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4.2.1. Title Jekabpils City Council Residential and Business eServices
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4.2.2. Description

Jekabpils City Council Residential and Business eServices, aim to improve public knowledge of the use of IT and the quality and accessibility of eServices. In addition, the project seeks to perfect administrative capability for implementing eGovernment while facilitating the use of eServices by residents and entrepreneurs. The collaboration ability of services for citizens, businesses and public administrations this demonstrates the project’s contribution to the field of interoperability. Residents and businesses are free to choose the means of contacting Jekabpils City Council and accessing the services that are most tailored to their needs; residents with no Internet access can submit their queries either by telephone or by visiting the city council authority personally. The residents and businesses are free to choose the way of contacting the Jekabpils City Council and accessing the services that is most tailored to their needs; residents with no Internet access can submit their queries either over the phone, or by visiting the City Council authority personally. The One-Stop-Agency attends to all residential and business queries related to the local government work and services, and the access to the local government’s electronic IT services is provided for free to all residents of the Jekabpils city. The OSA is the place where residents can get the relevant minutes of meetings, decisions and statements, and be provided information regarding the procedure for drawing up City Council decisions and review of customer complaints and proposals; here they can also get various permits and archive reports, and learn more about various sports and culture events and the City Council meeting timetable. Customers with Internet access can submit their queries either by e-mail, or using the Skype, or the portal. The main purpose of the Home Page is to allow the customer to sort out various issues electronically where the eSignature plays a major role.

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4.2.3. Status

Operational since December 2004

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4.2.4. Indicative interoperability aspects covered
  • Service Registries
  • Metadata Management
  • Legal Framework
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Brief description of benefits, reusable components, patterns and lessons learnt from the particular IOP case.

4.2.5. Impact

Jekabpils City Council is the first City Council in Latvia to have provided access to so many and so versatile eServices, thereby making the local government work much more efficient and productive. By turning the local government services into eServices the City Council has allowed the customer to efficiently and easily access all necessary documents and information, thereby facilitating public participation in administration work, ensuring transparency of the work process and advising of the forthcoming changes well in advance, as well as eliminating bureaucracy and enhancing local government development.

 

Track Record of Sharing:

Similar local government modernisation is scheduled to take place in other regions of the country, too.

 

Lessons Learnt:

- When turning the services into electronic, the main focus shall be laid on efficient use of the resources.
- It is of no less importance to define the needs, main issues and targets of the local government so that to be able to resolve these by developing quality eServices, thereby contributing to efficiency of local government work and making the services more customer-friendly and tailored to customer needs.
- Ensuring transparency of local government work, where such results are achieved by providing access to electronic services and enhancing communication, we thereby facilitate public participation in public administration work.

5. e-Government Interoperability
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This indicator reveals the degree of interoperability that reaches the final recipients of public services, aka citizens and businesses, in terms of fully automated and proactive service delivery. The indicator is based on the “Full Online Availability” benchmark introduced by Capgmenini to assess the 20 basic services (12 services for citizens and 8 services for businesses) against the fourth and fifth stages of the 5-stage maturity model, where stage 4 (transaction) corresponds to full electronic case handling, requiring no other formal procedure from the applicant via “paperwork”, and stage 5 (targetisation) provides an indication of the extent, by which front- and back-offices are integrated, data is reused and services are delivered proactively. The reference year is also provided.

5.1. Interoperability Level of core e-Government services to citizens / businesses 93.0%
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The term “Connected Government” is used in the e-Government Survey of the United Nations (2008) within the frame of the Web Measure Index in order to describe the situation in which governments transform themselves into a connected entity that responds to the needs of its citizens by developing an integrated back office infrastructure. In this context, the indicator “Connected Government Status” expresses the percentage of services, which are provided in Stage V “Connected”, based on the information on Service Delivery by Stages 2008, included in the e-Government Survey as well. The reference year is also provided.

5.2. Connected Government Status 1.49%
6. e-Business Interoperability
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Focusing on a typical aspect of the enterprise sector’s operation i.e. information sharing, this metric provides an indication of the intra-organizational integration level that characterizes the latter in terms of the percentage of enterprises in which information on sales or on purchases is shared electronically among the different internal functions (e.g. management of inventory levels, accounting, production or services management, distribution management etc.). All enterprises which use a computer with 10 or more persons employed are included (without financial sector). The year of the data is also provided.

6.1. Intra-organizational Integration Level 55.0%
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The cross-organization integration level of the enterprise sector is expressed as the percentage of enterprises that use automated data exchange between their own and other ICT systems outside the enterprise group. All enterprises which use a computer with 10 or more persons employed are included (without financial sector). The year of the data is also provided.

6.2. Cross-organization Integration Level 56.0%
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This indicator goes beyond the aspect of information exchange and investigates the cross-organization application-to-application integration level in the enterprise sector, based on the percentage of enterprises, whose business processes are automatically linked to those of their suppliers and/or customers. All enterprises which use a computer with 10 or more persons employed are included (without financial sector). The year of the data is also provided.

6.3. Cross-organization Application-to-Application Integration Level 45.0%
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Considering e-Invoicing as another aspect of e-Business Interoperability, this metric measures the percentage of enterprises that send and/or receive electronic invoices. All enterprises which use a computer with 10 or more persons employed are included (without financial sector). The year of the data is also provided.

6.4. e-Invoicing Status 48.0%
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This indicator examines the B2B data standards usage measuring the percentage of companies that use EDI-based, XML-based, propietary or other technical standards. The year of the data is also provided.

6.5. B2B Data Standards Usage
6.5.1. EDI-based standards Not available
6.5.2. XML-based standards Not available
6.5.3. Proprietary standards Not available
6.5.4. other technical standards Not available
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Interoperability awareness is examined in terms of the percentage of companies saying that interoperability is important for e-business within their sector, between sectors or for producing or providing products and services The year of the data is also provided.

6.6. Interoperability Awareness
6.6.1. Within their sector Not available
6.6.2. Between sectors Not available
6.6.3. For producing or providing products and services Not available