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Created by the Public Governance Directorate

This website was created by the OECD Observatory of Public Sector Innovation (OPSI), part of the OECD Public Governance Directorate (GOV).

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Embracing Innovation in Government: Global trends 2020 – Seamless government

Introduction to 2020 trends

Under normal circumstances, the OECD Observatory of Public Sector Innovation (OPSI) and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Mohammed Bin Rashid Centre for Government Innovation (MBRCGI) issue an annual report on key trends in government innovation. However, 2020 was not a normal year. Like the governments with whom we collaborate, much of our attention shifted to the COVID-19 crisis. 

The focus for 2020 still intended to report on emerging trends that we uncovered, and to tell the stories of innovators who are working to make a difference in how government serves its people. But in order to provide information in a more timely way, the 2020 edition is instead presented as five reports over the course of the year, each focused on one of the innovative trends identified by OPSI and MBRCGI.

Seamless government

The second trend in the 2020 series is seamless government. Research and analysis undertaken by OPSI and the MBRCGI reveal that the most innovative countries and cities are taking action to eliminate points of friction between governments and those that they serve. This approach enables them to re-imagine the ways in which governments can collaborate and consider future scenarios. Three key themes are driving efforts in this area:

  • Theme 1: Invisible government. Shifting from making government an ever-present factor in people’s lives to building proactive and automated services.
  • Theme 2: Matrixed government. Making bureaucratic and sectoral boundaries permeable and bringing together different pieces of society in order to work together to achieve goals.
  • Theme 3: Anticipatory government. Exploring scenarios and taking action today to actively shape tomorrow.

Explore the digital story

OPSI has created a digital story version of this report, which walks readers through key findings, conclusions, and recommendations, as well as the case studies presented in the report.

Embracing Innovation in Government: Global trends 2020 – Seamless government

Published on 17 September 2020.