ISSA and UNU-EGOV to cooperate on ICT and digitalization in social security

ISSA and UNU-EGOV to cooperate on ICT and digitalization in social security

The International Social Security Association (ISSA) and the United Nations University Operating Unit on Policy-Driven Electronic Governance (UNU-EGOV) have agreed to cooperate on advancing knowledge creation and sharing in the area of digital transformation and information and communication technologies (ICT) for social security institutions.

The ISSA and UNU-EGOV have overlapping priorities and goals, in terms of making strategic use of technology to transform and improve public governance structures to support social and economic development and strengthen the delivery of services to citizens. The agreement signed today formalizes a cooperation that started between the two international organizations in 2018.

“Our cooperation with UNU-EGOV will benefit our global membership, and strengthen the delivery of social security through digital transformation”, said Marcelo Abi-Ramia Caetano, Secretary General of the ISSA. Delfina Soares, Head of UNU-EGOV, added that, “The synergies between our organizations will benefit social security authorities globally and help us achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals, by developing innovative, efficient, and user-centric social security benefits and services.” Mr Caetano and Mrs Soares signed the Memorandum of Understanding during a virtual meeting today.

Key topics for the organizations to cooperate on will be personalized e-services, electronic identities, digital inclusion, blockchain and artificial intelligence (AI). During a recent webinar, organized by the ISSA European Network, Moinul Zaber, Senior Academic Fellow at UNU-EGOV, contributed with an important presentation on myths, realities and risks associated with the use of AI in public governance. Almost 200 participants from 58 countries and 78 social security institutions registered for this event.

Joint development of publications in the area of digital transformation and ICT areas relevant for social security institutions will be one of the main joint activities of the ISSA and UNU-EGOV, in addition to co-organizing and contributing to each other’s events. For instance, UNU-EGOV will be contributing to the 16th ISSA International Conference on Information and Communication Technology in Social Security, to be hosted by the Estonian Social Insurance Board, in May 2021.

ISSA member institutions will also benefit from UNU-EGOV’s contribution to technical requests they may have, and from other research and analysis, knowledge sharing and promotional activities to achieve excellence in social security.