SIGMA ministerial conference: roundtable 2


Creating a competitive and business-friendly environment through better public services


Countries fiercely compete to attract businesses while governments try to ensure quality services for their citizens and businesses. What are the key enablers governments need to focus on to improve their services? Success stories and common challenges regarding high-quality services of the state were discussed.



Edwin Lau, Head of Division, Reform of the Public Sector, Public Governance Directorate, OECD

Mr Lau’s division helps countries improve the responsiveness of their governments and their relations with citizens and business through work on public sector innovation, e-government, open data, human resource management, and risk management. During this roundtable Mr. Lau briefly looked at the case for innovation (better productivity and outcomes, less internal administrative controls) and how to address core enablers of innovation (people, structures, rules, budget, risk) through OECD examples drawing on from the OECD’s Fostering innovation report.

Pia Gjellerup, Director, Danish National Centre for Public Sector Innovation

Ms Gjellerup is the Director of the Danish National Center for Public Sector Innovation (COI), which was established in 2014 and works across all three layers of the Danish public sector: local, regional and national. COI contributes to the public sector becoming more efficient and delivering services and products of a higher quality through innovation. Ms Gjellerup introduced the work and organisational setting of the COI, as well as its main themes of work for public sector innovation, such as the Innovation Barometer and evaluation of innovation.

Hala Helmy El Said, Minister of Planning, Monitoring and Administrative Reform, Egypt.

Ms El Said introduced the Egyptian efforts for modernising administrative services under the umbrella of the Egypt Vision 2030 National Development Strategy.

Archil Karaulashvili, First Deputy State Minister on European and Euro-Atlantic integration, Georgia.

Mr Karaulashvili introduced the work of the Georgian Government on establishing a citizen-centric service provision model with the introduction of the one-stop shops. He gave some insight on how the process was organised and what main challenges the managers of the reform had to face during its design and implementation.

Bojana Bošković, Director General for Financial System and Improvement of Business Environment, Ministry of Finance, Montenegro.

Ms Bošković leads the team in charge of regulatory guillotine in Montenegro and in co-operation with the UNDP has been conducting the campaign “No Barriers! So Business Doesn’t Wait”. The project is aimed at cutting red tape and remove business barriers that slow down and impede business operations with a view to improving public service quality and efficiency.


 Peter Vági, Senior Adviser, SIGMA, OECD

Key points 

  • Reforming public services is a continuous process which should cover the full cycle, from design to implementation.

  • While regulatory frameworks and administrative traditions differ across countries, many solutions are common.

  • A sound legal framework, strong institutional co-operation, regular communication and mind-set change are all important for maximising benefits of reforms/sustaining results.  

  • Open government is key: based on innovative solutions, smart use of data and constant dialogue with end-users.

  • Digital solutions should be aligned with the context of the administrative culture and traditions. 





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