In support of the Digital Transformation Ministry’s goal of helping 6 million Ukrainians develop good digital competence by 2023, we jointly carried out the first-ever study of digital literacy among Ukrainians.
Presented at the end of 2019, the results shows that 53% of Ukrainians already have some digital competence, but below the basic level. Another 37.9% have very low competence, while 15.1% have no digital skills at all.
Younger Ukrainians, age 10-17, showed the highest levels of competence, with 61.6% registering as “higher than average.”
As the basis for determining the level of digital competence, we used the methodology of the European Commission, DigComp 2.0. Digital competence covers four parameters: information and communication skills—which are the most developed among Ukrainians, both at over 70%, according to the survey—, the ability to solve problems online, and the search for information in the Internet.
Altogether, the study involved:
All the results of this research can be found here
The results were used as the basis for the National Online Digital Literacy Platform called Diia.Digital Education, presented on January 21, 2020.
Together with the Ministry of Digital Transformation, we participated in developing and launching the National Online Digital Literacy Platform called Diia.Digital Education. The purpose of this project is to teach digital competence to at least six million Ukrainians by 2023.
Our key target groups are:
An innovative form of educational “serials” has been chosen for the learning process: instead of lessons, series, and instead of grades, seasons. The project has invited both expert instructors and Ukrainian celebrities whom people are used to seeing on TV and who will entertain, keep the dialog moving, tell jokes and improvise.
On the Diia.Digital Education platform, anyone who is interested can find, among others, such educational serials as:
All educational serials are free of charge. New specialized and niche courses for business professionals, lifestyle courses, and courses in new digital careers will be available through the online platform nearly every month. At the end of every course, participants can take a final test and get a certificate confirming that they have passed successfully.
As of May 1, 2020, the Diia.Digital Education platform has seen 200,000 users take its courses.
Diia.Digital State is the largest-scale digital project in Ukraine today, which we are carrying out jointly with the Ministry of Digital Transformation. Its goal is to make it easy and transparent for individuals and business to communicate with their government.
To transform Ukraine into a digital state, many services still need to be digitized, the legal framework needs to be updated, the work of state registries needs to be streamlined, and technological capabilities and data protection need to be ensured. These changes will affect not only administrative services but also such sectors as healthcare, business, education, transport, the court system, issues related to democracy, and so on.
This initiative has led to the launch of the Diia government services portal. Diia, meaning “action,” is the access point to all public services that the government provides to individuals and businesses. Everything on this site is clear, quick and easy-to-understand. The services have been completely streamlined, the language is simple, and the interface is based on UX/UI design. MinDigit plans for 100% of government services to be accessible online by 2024. As of May 2020, the Diia system has already been visited by over 2.3 million users.
The concept of the digital state was preceded by the development of Diia as a national brand, which was also done with the support of the EGAP Program. The Diia brand stands for “the State and I” and is based on the contemporary idea that interactions between individuals and their government should be easy, understandable and quick. They should not waste time or energy, nor should they involve unnecessary dealings with bureaucrats, which is a great way to cut out corruption.
A key element in the digitalization of the oblasts is automating the Administrative Services Centers or CNAPs. These centers are becoming the face of digital transformation, ensuring quality and speed in the provision of administrative services without red tape, queues or wasted time.
Most Ukrainians turn to the government for administrative services at least once a year. Registering domicile, registering ownership of real estate, getting a license to engage in commercial activities—all these kinds of services are now quickly provided in a “one-stop-shop” fashion. At the CNAPs, individuals can get the best service in the shortest time with the least number of personal visits.
During the first phase of EGAP, we instituted these services at the CNAPs:
Digitizing services means saving time for both individuals and businesses, greater access and convenience—and the elimination of corruption in the process. The goal of this project is to make all administrative services transparent and accessible to every Ukrainian.
Digitalization makes it possible to equalize access for urban and rural residents, not only to administrative services but also to other key areas: education, safety, participatory government and budgets, and information about government spending. Every voter can influence the allocation of taxpayer money.
Digitalizing the oblasts means systematic efforts to plan strategic digitalization in a participatory fashion and to implement it together with the community, according to jointly established priorities. The goal of the EGAP Program is to improve the quality and accessibility of government services and to reach a new level of interaction between governments and their communities.
It’s in the oblasts that the effectiveness of the transformed system of government services will demonstrate the success of this large-scale initiative to institute e-government in Ukraine.
During the first phase of the EGAP Program, 2015-2019, we undertook a number of steps together with oblast state administrations (ODAs), local government agencies and community organizations;
For the second phase of the EGAP Program, 2019-2023, we have involved 40 competitively selected communities in five target oblasts. Working together with them, we are putting together digital success stories that are expected to attract even more oblasts to the digitalization process.
The main purpose of the Open City service is for residents to keep City Hall informed about current problems with the general condition of their community. This resource brings the local government closer to its residents and provides an effective mechanism for interaction in resolving the most urgent issues involving housing and residential services, the general condition of infrastructure, and so on.
The Open City project is a crowdsourcing platform for residents to interact with their local governments and utility providers, and for people to organize their own initiatives.
For this purpose, the site has a section called “Problems” where people can leave notices about problems. These will be delivered to the responsible agency to deal with.
This service helps in finding solutions to problems in the city by approaching those on the city council who are responsible for making such decisions. The platform tools make it possible to describe the problem, to mark its location on a map, and to put together an electronic notice.
What you need to do
The Open City service is already being used by 70 communities, which have solved more than 22,000 problems, large and small.
E-consultations were set up by us in partnership with the State Agency for E-Governance—now the Ministry of Digital Transformation—for government agencies that want to be on the same wavelength as their communities—and for residents who want to co-sponsor decisions, initiatives and local policies and to influence them in a convenient way.
Online consultations are an effective tool for national and local governments to discuss issues or propositions involving strategic areas, activities, actions or policies, with their voters.
With the help of this service, you can request:
E-Consultations engage active voters with different views, who can express their opinions on a given issue without leaving their homes, and offer their own solutions.
With the help of e-Consultations, the public can participate in deciding different issues, such as choosing which streets should get repaired first, or deciding which schools will stay open and which ones can be closed. In 2018, e-Consultations became the most popular means of consulting with ministries, central executive bodies (CEBs), and local executive bodies (LEBs). The kinds of issues that residents raised included repairing streets, holding celebrations in the city, reconstructing parks, changing street names, and much more.
Individuals can use e-Consultations after a one-time registration using their BankID or digital signature.
Electronic petitions are a convenient and effective tool of direct democracy for individuals who want to support one initiative or another. The “Local Petitions” service allows people to address local government agencies virtually.
Ukraine is one of the first countries in the world to institute petitions in local government agencies. The kinds of issues about which community residents typically appeal to their governments using e-petitions include a wide range of questions that arise in housing and residential services, road repair, and furnishing or designating premises.
A petition has specific time, quantity and legal frames, as well as requirements that must be met. If a petition does not garner the necessary number of signatures, it reverts to the status of an individual appeal.
An e-petition is an effective instrument for change in a community. In Lviv, the institution of a single ticket for all forms of public transit started with a petition. In Lutsk, a petition to expand the memorial to Volyn residents killed in the Russian war against Ukraine got the city to allocate funds for the purpose from the local budget.
Nearly 220 communities have instituted e-petitions, and those have so far gathered nearly 2.4 million signatures. In 2016, the platform was expanded to the national level and implemented as part of the process of introducing e-petitions in the Cabinet of Ministers.
The Participatory Budget is democracy in action: residents can independently decide which changes their city needs the most by proposing their own projects or voting for the projects of others.
The Participatory Budget is an instrument for active residents to change their city or county for the better. An updated version of this platform was launched in the spring of 2017.
The mechanism for a participatory budget was born in the city of Porto Alegre, Brazil in 1989. Today, it’s being used in many cities around the world. A participatory budget allows residents to really have influence in the place where they live and to decide what they want their tax money to go to. Applying is easy: you don’t have to go anywhere, as everything is done online. Voting for projects is transparent and easy-to-understand.
In big cities, which were the first ones to introduce participatory budgets, the biggest support goes to social projects today. In small communities, by contrast, infrastructure projects dominate.
By getting involved in participatory budgets, the residents of the village of Sviatohirske in Poltava Oblast chose a bright idea like the first Interregional Tourist Festival and Fair called Everything’s Going Tourist, while the residents of Dunayivka in Khmelnytskiy Oblast went for a trail for young naturalists called On the Edge of Epochs. And there are hundreds of stories like these.
Since this service was launched, Ukrainians have submitted more than 4,000 proposals for projects, for which over UAH 116 million have been allocated.