One-Network Architecture: Enabling Government Digital Transformation & Economic Recovery in Europe
Accelerated by COVID-19, digital transformation is well underway. Against this backdrop, the pandemic forced a number of issues to take center stage, including the digital divide, data silos, the absence of digital services, and a lack of digital channels.
This has in compelled governments around the world to step up their digital transformation efforts.
To better cope with the economic and social risks posed by the pandemic and to build resilience against future crises, European nations are accelerating the adoption of digital technologies and shifting from traditional to service-oriented governments for better governance, higher service flexibility, and stronger economic resilience.
Four current trends
1. Expanding service channels to realize digital inclusion for all
Many governments in Europe have used a variety of digital solutions to enable WFH, online teaching, and online healthcare to respond to lockdowns. Furthermore, they are upgrading digital networks to adopt a more digital approach. Doing so enables vulnerable groups to enjoy public services and social security more efficiently and conveniently through digital networks, ultimately to achieve inclusive digital services for all.
France, for example, quickly launched online education based on a unified platform, streamlined teaching resources, and supporting policies. These efforts have greatly improved online learning accessibility for students in poor areas, helping to bridge the digital divide.
2. Accelerating data consolidation to eliminate data silos
Pandemic prevention and control has highlighted the urgent need for data sharing. For this reason, governments are increasingly turning to big data analytics to improve policy effectiveness, accelerate decision-making, and optimize government services. Policy makers and experts require first-hand data information. As such, governments have to eliminate data silos and work with multiple parties to expand data resources.
In the UK, for example, the National Health Service (NHS) and Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) identified approximately 540,000 COVID-19 vaccine priority recipients through data sharing.
3. Strengthening cross-departmental collaboration to improve policy effectiveness
The COVID-19 pandemic forced governments to change their siloed mindsets and strengthen cross-departmental cooperation. Many countries use effective data sharing technologies to break down departmental barriers and unite all government agencies. This collaborative approach takes public services to new levels and, more importantly, offers governments a feasible way to solve many other thorny social problems.
The HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) in the UK, for example, made tax payments convenient by partnering with open banking providers.
4. Streamlining digital communication channels to achieve resilient community governance
Nowadays, pandemic prevention and control has become a normal part of daily life. Given this, the public sector urgently needs to put in place a smooth communication mechanism with communities, helping them to become more stable and resilient. It is for this reason that many countries have begun to turn their attention to new digital tools and web platforms. These essential capabilities help enhance community-level epidemic prevention and response by improving digital access, strengthening community communication, and enhancing participation in community governance.
The East Westphalia-Lippe region in Germany, for example, strengthened mutual assistance between neighborhoods by building information platforms and improving digital public service facilities.
Keeping up with these four trends would not be possible without the adoption of ICT infrastructure and solutions, which lay a technological foundation for the global wave of digital transformation.
The pandemic had a profound impact on public services and socioeconomics. In this context, it is imperative for governments to adopt and apply more advanced ICTs at scale. Doing so will help provide more comprehensive and convenient government services to the public, which can help propel economic development and enhance economic resilience.
According to Huawei’s Global Connectivity Index (GCI) 2020 report, countries with higher ICT maturity were able to react faster to and mitigate the impact of the pandemic.
Five unique capabilities
Our one-network architecture features five unique capabilities that enable multi-cloud services, creating greater social benefits
With a strong track record in the ICT industry, Huawei has developed the one-network architecture with five unique capabilities tailored to the public service sector:
- one-network to multiple clouds
- one-network bearing
- one-network unified management
- one-network wide connection
- one-network unified access
This new architecture enables governments to build a unified government service platform and implement multi-cloud services that enables European countries to make their governments service-oriented, share data, realize inclusive digital services for all, and improve resilience to crises and economic shocks.
1. One-network to multiple clouds
To boost digital resilience, governments need to reduce operating costs and more importantly, be better positioned for a fast response. This can reshape citizens’ experience and satisfaction with new paradigms.
In response, Huawei developed an open hybrid cloud mode that offers a unique unified Network Element (NE) model, combining the flexibility of public clouds with the security of private clouds and enabling elastic multi-cloud collaboration. This hybrid cloud mode is favored by a growing number of governments, as it helps them to quickly respond to citizen service requests 24/7 and reduce operating costs.
2. One-network bearing
Traditionally, government agencies suffer from data silos. Our purpose-built solution can carry all data on one network and implement unified planning and construction. This transforms department-centric data isolation into service-centric data sharing. Flexible slicing technology ensures differentiated Service Level Agreements (SLAs), making it ideal to securely isolate sensitive services, such as finance and health, without compromising resilience and bandwidth assurance. This is a great fit for mission-critical services, including critical communications, electronic health insurance, video, and key service assurance.
3. One-network unified management
Traditional network management methods lack visibility into the status of each government branch, which leads to low O&M efficiency and poor security. Huawei’s solution overcomes this by enabling one-network unified management. Specifically, the statuses of massive numbers of devices can be visualized on a single pane of glass, enabling global O&M and delivering unmatched visibility. KPIs are continuously monitored, and intelligent optimization is performed based on user experience. Moreover, AI-powered O&M enables proactive fault prediction, shortening fault resolution to minutes and reducing the user complaint rate by 90%.
These capabilities ensure always-on network services.
4. One-network wide connection
Traditionally, when a leased line from a carrier is faulty, tenants have to wait for the carrier to pinpoint and resolve the fault, which in some cases can take weeks. Huawei’s solution addresses this by offering tenant-level interfaces, monitoring and managing link quality, and adjusting policies in self-service mode if a fault occurs. As a result, tenant experience is greatly improved. Additionally, while ensuring local security protection, Huawei’s solution automatically adjusts service link policies for on-demand cloud access, in turn maximizing bandwidth utilization and reducing leased-line costs.
5. One-network unified access
In the aftermath of the pandemic, remote work and mobile work have increased in prevalence. This requires consistent network resources for government employees even when they are on the go, instead of being confined to fixed workplaces. Huawei’s solution meets this by enabling one-network unified access. The solution enables cellular coverage without blind spots, lossless roaming without drops, and 200 Mbit/s-anywhere wireless access. This ensures network security and improves office efficiency. In addition, Huawei’s unique intelligent radio calibration technology improves network performance by 50% and ensures always-on services.
Huawei’s solution is widely used in the global public service sector. For example, the Alicante government in Spain teamed up with Huawei to build an efficient and unified next-generation e-government data center network, accelerating its digital transformation journey. Based on Software-Defined Networking (SDN) architecture, this future-proof network uses iMaster NCE-Fabric — Huawei’s autonomous driving network management and control system for data centers — to implement E2E management, configuration, and O&M automation. The resulting benefits include more secure, reliable, agile, and efficient public services.
The new wave of digital transformation is sweeping across the world. Riding this digital wave was not only a temporary measure taken by countries to fight against the pandemic, it has also emerged as a global trend in the post-pandemic era.
As the foundation for digital transformation, ICT has become integral to the economic recovery plans of various countries. To stay at the vanguard of this trend, Huawei will continue to focus on ICT infrastructures and innovations, including basic compute power support and high-speed network services to enable governance characterized by inclusive digital services and convergence.
Disclaimer: Any views and/or opinions expressed in this post by individual authors or contributors are their personal views and/or opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views and/or opinions of Huawei Technologies.