Parliament officers benefit from ICT workshop

The National Assembly recently sent its Public Relations Officer Oneika Walton and its Systems Development Officer Deo Dookie to a the workshop on information and communication technology (ICT) Strategic Planning and the use of Social Media in Parliaments in Montevideo, Uruguay.

The workshop, which started on October 23 and concluded on Friday, was organised within the framework of the Exchange Network of the Parliaments of Latin America and the Caribbean through the Global Centre for ICT in Parliaments, a press release from the Parliament Office said. The regional workshop was intended to respond to some of the challenges faced by parliaments of Latin America in planning strategically for the use of ICT, both to enhance the effectiveness of their internal processes and to improve their communication and information services towards citizens, according to the Parliament Office. It said the attendance of Walton and Dookie, the Parliament Office noted, was out of recognition of the importance of the use of ICT in ensuring that its work is transparent, accountable and effective. According to the release, the first day of workshop was dedicated to discussion among participants on the budgets of their respective parliaments regarding ICT, and the process of prioritisation of the ICT projects by the legislature.  The second day focused on ICT strategic planning, the basic steps of strategic planning, their objectives and the tools that can assist in the process.

On the third day, participants concentrated on the use of social media guidelines for parliaments published by the Inter-Parliamentary Union with support from the Association of Secretaries General of Parliaments (ASGP), the IFLA section of Libraries and Research Services for Parliaments and the Global Centre for ICT in Parliament. The objective of the guidelines is to encourage more widespread, more effective use of social media by parliaments.

Participants also had the opportunity to discuss the draft document ‘ICT strategic planning in parliament’ prepared through the Global Centre for ICT strategic planning, the release said. The document aims at providing guidance to the political and administrative leaders of parliaments and their senior staff in the basic principles of strategic planning as it applies to ICT and on the steps to be undertaken by legislature to devise their own ICT Strategic Plan, it noted. The workshop was organised by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA), the Inter-parliamentary Union and the Parliament of Uruguay through the Global Centre of ICT in Parliament and was said to be attended by members of parliament who are responsible for the budgeting of ICT in their Parliaments, directors of ICT and the heads of communication services in the respective parliaments.

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