Infrastructure Free needs Standards

Filed under: Standards,Strategy — lenand @ 9:48 am
Tags: , ,

Westminster City Council is certainly sticking to its “Infrastructure Free” strategy.  It was referenced by Computer Weekly in July 2008, declaring an objective of completing the programme by 2015.  In January 2011,  Computing quoted David Wilde, the CIO, as saying:

“The council’s goal was originally to become infrastructure free by 2015, but we will probably get there by late 2013 or early 2014,”

The change of Government seems to have accelerated the process, even if all his staff have not been fully informed.  At Kingston University’s IMKS Forum, a presentation just repeated the 2015 date.

It was also interesting to hear that Westminster are not going for an all-singing all-dancing ERP system.  They are selecting best of breed for each application and selecting an integration platform.  This gave me the chance to get in my usual plug for enterprise architects to study the international standard for interoperability between heterogeneous systems (ISO 18876). It establishes an architecture and a methodology for:

  • data sharing and data integration;
  • specification of mappings between models;
  • data transformation.

Because the speakers were also expressing the need for standards when contemplating any form of information sharing, I also put in an advertorial for providing support for the Local e-Government Standards Body (LeGSB).

There seems to be a growing realisation that ICT has the potential to improve efficiency of public services – and that common standards will help.  It just needs stronger leadership to make sure that practical standards are adopted.


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