Big Data Drives Efficient Public Services

Unified data platforms that share and update information in real time enable better, faster, and easier government services.

Big Data
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Amid digital transformation, big data is emerging as a major pillar of public sector IT strategy. Government agencies can increase their efficiency and effectiveness by breaking down data silos and creating one common view of their big data. But they must do so, of course, within the legal framework of their country.

The Huawei Big-Data platform offers the following advantages:

  1. Agility
  • Provides a range of data processing capabilities, covering converged data warehouse, offline processing, real-time stream computing, real-time retrieval, interactive query, and relationship analysis.
  • Supports unified multi-cluster and multi-tenant management.
  • Supports rolling upgrades with zero downtime.
  • Uses Elk and Spark SQL that are compliant with SQL standards.
  1. Intelligence
  • The graph database responds to correlated data analyses covering tens of billions of records within seconds, promptly returning query results covering hundreds of billions of relationships spanning tens of billions of nodes.
  • RTD enables millisecond-level real-time risk control, making the shift from post-event to real-time risk control.
  • This solution has integrated more than ten algorithms to allow unified algorithm management and improve resource utilization of AI clusters by about 100%.
  1. Convergence
  • Provides DLF for one-stop data integration, development, and management.
  • Converges Hadoop and MPPDB data.
  • Deploys x86 and ARM server hybrid.

These capabilities make it possible to support vital public services functions so that public services agencies can create a truly data-driven environment where decisions are made based on accurate data.

Government operations are complex, but providing one common data picture eases the concerns raised by laws, regulations, and citizens’ expectations. Using Huawei’s big data platform, governments are able to run their operations in real time, develop insightful policies and programs, and deliver the services that citizens expect and demand.

A well-defined data strategy built on Huawei’s big data platform enables agencies to deliver these key benefits:

  • Create an open and collaborative ecosystem.
  • Create one common data operating picture.

In pursuing these goals, however, agencies must overcome significant challenges. These include:

  • Access and use of citizens’ data in accordance with privacy laws.

Digital privacy is a topic of great interest. Citizens expect that their personal data will be protected. At the national level, data sovereignty is an increasingly strategic topic closely linked with data security, cloud computing, and national sovereignty.

  • Managing the sharing of data between agencies.

Data sharing between agencies is complex, because data is often siloed within and across agencies and can be challenging to share. Laws and regulations also often make data sharing difficult.  Several countries have put in place data-sharing legislation to address this issue. The European Union’s GDPR is a perfect example. Other governments may need to develop ethics-based legislative strategies to address similar challenges in data sharing.

  • Enhancing cybersecurity to create a secure environment.

Cybersecurity must be addressed in the complex governmental environment. Confidence in a government’s systems and processes requires a heightened level of cybersecurity that ensures the safe operation of agency services. Continued attacks by the United States government on the safety of Huawei products and capabilities will always be on the minds of our customers.

Data-driven digital transformation

One of the main challenges facing governments today is that many do not have the necessary knowledge or do not understand what is required to be fully real-time, data-driven organizations. Very few have the legislative framework, technical knowledge, integrated systems and the needed data to help them navigate a smooth journey. Before entering into a very complex solution selection process, they need to identify where they are and where they want to go as they begin this journey.

Smart, data-driven governments may need to redefine their missions, governance processes, and skillsets. They may need to review the legislative framework of their country and explore amending laws and regulations to support the changes they seek. Strong governance and leadership will be necessary to ensure buy-in from citizens. Upholding privacy and cybersecurity should be at the top of their to-do list.

Further, the need for change management will be significant if governments want to overcome inertia. Legacy system migration and integration is a huge challenge to the adoption of new technology. Many agencies cite data migration difficulty and re-training challenges as the key reasons their organizations are reluctant to implement data-driven strategies. With the emergence of platform and data-sharing technologies, information and data can now be easily extracted and stored in a data warehouse or moved to cloud-based data lakes to be catalogued, searched and analyzed. It is imperative that top management understand the potential and value of technology implementation and commit to change. Governments must also be willing to develop, hire, and retain data scientists and data analysts if they want to ensure success.

In summary, smart government is all about data. A data-driven strategy needs to answer many questions, such as:

  • What data do we need to achieve our objectives?
  • What are the considerations for privacy and data protection?
  • How can data accuracy be ensured?
  • Do we have the legal authority to access, share, and use the data?
  • How do we ensure data protection?
  • What are the limitations on who can access the data?

Ultimately, technology adoption is never simple and straightforward. And there will always be people who are skeptical, raising question after question and problem after problem, ignoring the positive part of the equation. However, a well-defined data-driven strategy with clear objectives and milestones will ensure success.

Big data was one of the key topics discussed in Huawei’s annual flagship event in late September 2020. Experts, industry elite, top-notch developers, partners, and clients gathered in Shanghai during the fifth edition of Huawei Connect to share their insights into rapidly changing digital transformation. Along with the sharing of views and future projections, Huawei Connect showcased ground-breaking and innovative solutions that will help lead government agencies, as well as enterprises, through a most rewarding journey.

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Pierre Perron Pierre Perron

Pierre Perron is Global Government Industry Scientist of the Enterprise Business Group of Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd. He is an experienced government official and part of a global team of Government Industry scientists that assist government and public safety agencies with high-level ICT design. Having served 35 years with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, he is fluent in French and English and is now based in Reading, UK.

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