Artificial Intelligence in the public sector: achievements and challenges

The process of implementing Artificial Intelligence in the public sector in Spain is starting to take off, we analyze its achievements and challenges.

According to a report prepared by EY, the use of Artificial Intelligence in the Spanish public sector is at an early stage. Only 33% of it has adopted some solution of this type. However, 80% of the administrations consulted consider the implementation of Artificial Intelligence as a digital priority .

The 2020 pandemic has created new challenges for the public sector. Mainly the ability to keep basic services operational in extremely difficult circumstances and the need to adapt to teleworking. These challenges can be met with the functionalities provided by Artificial Intelligence solutions. For example, the Department of Employment, Training and Self-Employment of the Regional Government of Andalusia deployed a solution to help the self-employed with emergency subsidy requests. This solution succeeded in reducing the time to resolve the subsidies and saved a large amount of time of public employees who have been able to focus on other necessary tasks in this situation.

Artificial Intelligence in leadership

To implement solutions with embedded Artificial Intelligence it is necessary that it is established from the highest levels of leadership. This is because its use and application implies the following:

  • A new way of working that therefore requires implementation from the top.
  • Also a new way to manage easy or repetitive tasks.
  • It allows for innovation and reinforcement of existing services.

Responsibility and commitment in the use of data

The algorithms and data sets used by Artificial Intelligence, used with impartiality and respecting privacy, security and transparency, can do great things for society. Therefore, it is important to establish clear guidelines and transparent processes that instill public confidence in the administrations. In this sense, Microsoft has created principles on the design and responsible use of Artificial Intelligence that can help the public sector to address this challenge.

Adaptation of public employees to the use of Artificial Intelligence.

The value of Artificial Intelligence lies in the data that is used and therefore needs to be optimized. This is a big task for IT teams. In addition, a cultural change is required at all levels of government. Public employees need to be aware of the potential of data and their role in working with it.

The use of Artificial Intelligence in the public and private sector adds productivity and performance to human resources. Therefore, in addition to the implementation of technology, it is necessary for employees to develop new skills to be able to manage and work in the transformation.

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