The report discusses the importance of cross-border collaboration and innovation in tackling global challenges such as climate change and disease. The report identifies three themes related to cross-border government innovation: delivering joint cross-border policy and solution-oriented services, digital architecture enabling cross-border innovation, and adding a cross-border dimension to upskilling and capacity building.
Under the first theme, the report discusses case studies of cross-border collaborations that have successfully implemented policies and services to address global challenges. These efforts tend to focus on specific global challenges such as environmental sustainability, cooperation in health services, and protecting vulnerable groups. The report notes that effective implementation of cross-border solutions is complex and often requires tailored approaches and novel legal procedures.
The second theme of the report focuses on digital architecture enabling cross-border innovation. The report discusses the importance of digital innovation in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic and the need for coordination across borders and jurisdictions. The report also highlights a case study of Estonia and Finland exchanging interoperable data across borders via an X-Road Trust Federation, which joins each country’s national data ecosystem.
Under the third theme, the report discusses upskilling and capacity building across borders. The report notes that special governance capacities are needed for cross-border efforts, particularly to support innovation. The report identifies two key ways in which upskilling and capacity building are taking shape in innovative ways across borders: new types of skills-transfer programs and new frameworks and tools to help enhance skills and capacities for cross-border collaboration.
The report identifies several challenges associated with cross-border government innovation, including language and cultural barriers, lack of information and insights on operations among partners, lack of training around executing cross-border projects, lack of data and the ability for meaningful interpretation, navigating privacy considerations, and lack of a common evaluation framework for implemented projects. The report also identifies several success factors critical for supporting implementation and delivery of impactful solutions, such as appropriate technical infrastructure and information systems, incorporating interoperable digital identity, and working towards non-technical interoperability.
The report concludes with four key recommendations for delivering and enabling innovative cross-border solutions, including collectively mapping out interoperability differences with partners, pursuing a national public sector data strategy, integrating capabilities important for cross-border collaboration and innovation into competency frameworks, training and talent management programs, and leveraging the positioning of international organizations and building new structures only when existing ones are insufficient and cannot be adapted.
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