Digital New Zealanders in ‘Building a Digital Nation’ report

A new government report shows the full programme of activity for shaping and driving New Zealand’s digital transformation. The report lists initiatives and Action Plans in four areas: Digital Sector, Digital Businesses, Digital New Zealanders and Digital Government.

Communications Minister Simon Bridges released Building a Digital Nation at the launch of a Digital sector and Government alliance in Auckland today. The Alliance is one of several new initiatives included in the report, and will explore the economic and social benefits of the Internet of Things 1.

“The digital economy is a key focus of the Government’s Business Growth Agenda. This report sets out how the Government is partnering with New Zealand’s digital sector, with other sectors of the economy and the wider digital community, to enable New Zealand to become a leading digital nation.

“This is the first time the full programme of activity has been pulled together in one place, serving as a focal point for ongoing engagement with the digital community and for shaping and driving New Zealand’s digital transformation,” Mr Bridges says.

Connected and confident Digital New Zealanders

The Action Plan for ‘Digital New Zealanders’,  includes initiatives especially relevant to digital literacy and digital inclusion:

Initiate research to understand the impacts of digital inclusion on the social and economic outcomes of New Zealanders

DIA and MBIE  joint research with academics, community and industry will develop a New Zealand-specific evidence base on the impacts and opportunities from increasing digital inclusion of disadvantaged groups.

This work focuses on the causes of digital disadvantage and will propose ways to address these.

It also aims to identify the basic digital skills most likely to help people become more productive and/or digitally engaged citizens, and propose metrics to measure progress towards digital inclusion.

Once this initial research is completed, it will help government identify areas of future focus and potential investment. (Page 16)

Support the mapping of existing initiatives to build digital capability

MBIE is working with InternetNZ and the 20/20 Trust to disseminate their stocktake and heat map of existing New Zealand digital capability and inclusion initiatives.

The heat map will be developed into an interactive resource which community, government and other organisations who want to build digital capability and inclusion in their region can go to for examples.

This initiative is also being progressed by the Data Futures Partnership as one of their catalyst projects. (Page 16.  See also Digital inclusion map to get rich data, become heat map)

Integrate Digital Technology into the New Zealand curriculum

To ensure people have the skills and knowledge to participate and contribute to a fast-growing digital economy, from 2018, all schools need to incorporate digital technologies in their curricula. (Page 17)

More information

Press Release: New Zealand Government: Digital sector and Government alliance launched on Scoop website

The full Building a Digital Nation report and further information is available on www.mbie.govt.nz
(also click Digital Economy, then Digital New Zealanders on the infographic for current digital initiatives)

20/20 article Digital inclusion map to get rich data, become heat map

The prototype 20/20 Digital Inclusion map


Footnote 1
Internet of Things is a concept that involves connecting devices to the internet, enabling them to ‘talk’ to each other and to people. For example, smartphones might prompt people to take a specific route to an event because it has access to their current location and calendar.