Ireland’s first chief information officer (CIO) Bill McCluggage has highlighted the positive progress that clusters are making for the economy, particularly when they integrate government, private and academia.
Heralded as an appointment vital to the Government’s technology direction, McCluggage became the State’s first CIO in June 2013 and is responsible for the strategic direction of technology right across the public sector.
Kicking off the Autumn schedule of the it@cork European Tech Cluster’s Tech Thursday events in Cork, he talked about a range of policies that his department has achieved since taking office 88 days ago.
In particular he addressed the issue of eGovernment and the five key principles that are required to drive success ahead of 2015, when the current eGovernment policy document expires.
“The needs of citizens and businesses must be at the centre of government while public bodies should work to ensure that the online channel is the most attractive option for customers,” said Mr McCluggage.
“There is an overwhelming need to reduce the administrative burden for citizens and businesses. Government cannot afford to spend anything that does not solve a problem and have a return on investment. We need to invest in the right things. We have to challenge the status quo.”
Many of the region’s tech heavyweights such as IBM and EMC were represented at the event where McCluggage engaged in an extended questions and answers session.
Cian Kennedy of Laya Healthcare, who chairs the Tech Thursday series, commented: “McCluggage’s appointment bears out the reality that every large organisation, including the government of Ireland, needs a strategic plan in how their technology is to develop.
Prior to this role McCluggage was with EMC as chief technologist. This followed a very successful role as the UK’s Deputy Government CIO in Whitehall, where he was responsible for the formulation, development and communication of cross-Government ICT strategies and policies.