The State of Illinois’ Department of Innovation and Technology (DoIT) recently hosted the Smart State Roadmap Workshop, a two-day workshop to reach toward becoming the first “smart state” in the country. This initiative will likely influence other states to join in as Illinois leads the way.
"Governor Rauner has charged us to complete a holistic transformation and turn Illinois into a 21st century enterprise," says Trey Childress, Deputy Governor of Illinois. "Becoming the first smart state in the country is not just about technology; it is about improved processes, governance and, above all, improved customer service."
This workshop had more than 50 participants including the deputy governor, state agency heads, city officials, businesses, universities, national labs and nonprofits. It expanded on the success of the initial Smarter Illinois event held in April 2016 that jumpstarted the state’s technology transformation efforts. The workshop was delivered by the Smart Cities Council (SCC), whose partners and advisors have contributed to more than 10,000 smart cities projects internationally.
"Illinois is aggressively reducing the 45 years of technology debt in only four years by acting boldly and strongly engaging the private sector and other partners in this effort," says State of Illinois’ Department of Innovation and Technology Secretary Designate Hardik Bhatt. "We have the opportunity to leapfrog from legacy technology to global leadership, by getting a head start in becoming a smarter state."
A smart state uses information and communications technology (ICT) to enhance livability, workability and sustainability in its cities, towns, rural areas and state agencies. A smarter Illinois is ready for the future — harnessing digital transformation in a socially inclusive way that also strengthens business opportunities as well as the state’s brand, says SCC.
Key goals of the smart state initiative include improving the overall efficiency, effectiveness and accessibility of government services; creating an attractive climate for businesses and entrepreneurs; increasing state GDP; and establishing a leadership position as a smart state — all while keeping enterprise security and privacy at the forefront and preparing the workforce for the future.