Public sector and services include government-owned and government-controlled organizations. The sector includes law enforcement agencies, military, public transport, public education, and infrastructure (public roads, bridges, sewers, water supply, electric grids, telecommunication, etc.).
The public sector requires funding and it is usually raised by methods such as taxes, fees, and fund transfers from various levels of government (i.e., federal government to state or provincial government). The public sector and services are going through transformations to improve their services by innovating and adopting technologies across various domains.
Public sector agencies are using artificial intelligence (AI) that will help government employees to focus on more important tasks. For instance, in 2018, there were 193 member states using e-government systems at different levels to provide digital services to their citizens, according to the United Nations e-Government survey. In addition to this, the Office of State Revenue, an agency collecting taxes, was one of the first government agencies from the State of Queensland in Australia to use machine learning, data analytics, and AI to prevent tax frauds and payment irregularities.
Governments across the world are not only investing in smart cities but also in smart military base and university campuses to create a digitally connected environment. For instance, in December 2019, the Arizona State University built a Smart Campus. The campus uses the internet of things (IoT) to connect with students and provide them information such as parking lot availability to save time. In addition to this, IoT also helps in identifying the cost overrun of the university and in providing solutions to reduce them.
Technologies and trends such as 3D printing have shown an upward curve when it comes to the public sector. In 2019, global sales related to 3D printing by public enterprises and companies for 3D printers, services, and materials stood at US$ 2.7 Bn and are expected to reach US$ 3.2 Bn by the end of 2020. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has been approving 3D printed medical instruments and devices for public use, which will further accelerate the market of 3D printing in the public sector healthcare. Moreover, UAE has announced that 3D printed artificial limbs will be available by 2025 and 25% of buildings in the country will be centred on 3D printing technology.
In Europe, the government expenditure on general public services was approximately 6.0% of GDP in 2018. The major countries contributing to the general public sector expenditure were Hungry and Greece with 8.3% of GDP each and Finland with 8.0% of GDP, followed by Italy and Portugal with 7.9% and 7.4% of GDP respectively. In the Asia Pacific region, 5G will significantly contribute to the public sector economy, which is expected to be 10% of the economy by 2034. By 2023, public sector investment in the blockchain technology is expected to grow at a CAGR of 72.4%. There has been a 50% increase in jobs related to blockchain in the region since 2017, and it is rising with a similar trend.
Moreover, in region such as Latin America, governments need to focus on deploying digital platforms to provide more efficient and economical public services. Along with digital technologies, public sector institutions must encourage investments and experiment with fresh and innovative methods for service delivery, in order to boost productivity and growth. Technologies such as cloud, blockchain, AI, and 5G, among others, are transforming the public sector in the Middle East and African countries. Initiatives such as UAE Vision 2021, Oman Vision 2020, Saudi National Transformation Program 2020, and Kuwait 2035 are influencing the CIOs in the public sector to improve government services and meet national mandates, thereby providing enhanced citizen experience.
The public sector and services are growing in developing countries, with rising concerns regarding public safety and security, public health, infrastructure, and rising adoption of technologies in these regions.