Programme to promote digitalisation to be built as a collaboration

Marjukka Saarijärvi Sanna Juutinen
25.10.2019 - 15:03
Photo: John Schnobrich
One of the objectives of Prime Minister Antti Rinne’s Government Programme is to build a programme for the promotion of digitalisation, in accordance with which citizens and companies must be able to access public services digitally by 2023. We have approached the building of this programme enthusiastically: many measures related to the promotion of digitalisation are already underway and we now have a clearer idea of the programme’s main objectives. But how can these objectives be attained? We will need perspective and opinions from all of you for this.

What should we expect from a programme that promotes digitalisation? We must build and implement a digitalisation programme the implementation of which will not only ensure that public services are available digitally by 2023 but that they are of high quality and easily accessible.

Much underway already

The Digital Services Act, which will enter into force this year, will do its part to promote the digitalisation of public administration. After the law has entered into force, digital public services must be accessible. In addition, the law will promote the quality of services and obligate authorities to provide access to official services via a digital channel. In the future, we will enjoy higher-quality digital services.

Although the law obligates authorities, it does not obligate customers to use digital services. However, in this increasingly digitalised world, we want to facilitate the use of digital services by investing in digital support. Digital support will receive funding especially during this autumn’s discretionary government grants application round, which will expand digital support to nearly all of Finland.

The aim is for companies and other parties who carry out business activities to only use services on the digital channel. Digital services must be such that they ease the administrative burden of companies. The shift represents an extensive change to service methods, which must be prepared diligently: The Ministry of Finance has already launched the preparation of instructions that will support the change.

Digitalisation Programme part of a larger whole

As part of the Government Programme’s implementation, we will launch a broader set of initiatives for the promotion of digitalisation, which, in addition to the Digitalisation Programme, will include other mutually reinforcing actions. One of these will be the development of a digital identity, which will facilitate identification in digital services for Finnish citizens and all residents of Finland. Additionally, we will continue the development of the AuroraAI network, which will combine the services of various actors in one place.

Information policy and the strategic measures for opening up and utilising information will also be necessary for the programme in its entirety. The functionality of society and services will, in turn, be guaranteed through a policy for digital security. The authorities’ terrestrial trunked radio network, VIRVE will also be renewed as part of the programme.

Digitalisation Programme will be built during encounters

We will build the programme together. A more efficient society that utilises the tools of digitalisation will not be built around one table, and, for this reason, these discussions must be as inclusive as possible. In addition to cooperation between the central government and municipalities, it is important to engage in cooperation with companies and the third sector: in our coming work, we plan to implement the principles of transparency and collaboration.

The programme’s preparation phase will culminate in an event on 27 November, at which we will present the results of our preparation and look into the future. More information on the event: Digital Programme event on 27 November

When considering how best to develop the big picture with regard to digitalisation, the needs and daily lives of customers must always be kept in mind. Are we implementing things that will produce genuine added value or benefit? Digitalisation is only a method to attain functionality changes. This will be the foundation on which we will facilitate the interoperability of services and data – working together to put forward ideas.


Marjukka Saarijärvi is a Ministerial Adviser at the Ministry of Finance.

Sanna Juutinen is a Senior Specialist at the Ministry of Finance.

Marjukka Saarijärvi
neuvotteleva virkamies, VM
Sanna Juutinen
erityisasiantuntija, valtiovarainministeriö


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