Thursday 22, October 2015

Dubai – MENA Herald: Dubai Smart Government Department (DSG) and the Department of Economic Development (DED) have announced plans to transform government services using IBM’s cognitive computing system called ‘Watson’ during a press conference on the final day of Gitex Technology Week 2015. The government is working in collaboration with IBM to launch the new service, which will, in the initial stage enable exclusively DED customers, to benefit from the advanced self-service provided by the system to respond to all their inquiries related the DED’s services.

According to IBM, ‘Watson’ is a cognitive computing system that will allow customers to easily make their requests understood on government department websites. This means, for example, that business people looking to start new businesses in Dubai can easily request information and advice about new business set-up and receive all the relevant information about licenses and fees in written or audio format; without having to visit a government department or communicate with government employees via phone or email.  This supports the Dubai Smart City Program launched by H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.

H.E. Ahmad Bin Humaidan, Director General of Dubai Smart Government said: “We have succeeded in making a series of landmark developments in recent months, based on the innovative goals set out by H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, in building a ‘creative government’, which can respond to rapid changes and develop effective solutions to achieve positive outcomes for Dubai’s citizens, residents and visitors. Our continued achievements drive us to keep striving for new levels of excellence and leadership in government which will further cement Dubai’s leading position in the world, in line with the objectives of Dubai Plan 2021.”

Bin Humaidan affirmed: “The Watson initiative is a collaboration with the Department of Economic Development as part of our strategy to use the latest technology to enhance creativity and innovation in Dubai’s government. Together we will apply best practices and provide modern and smart tools to enable government entities to transition to a smart government.” He added that the Dubai Smart Government will next work with Dubai Municipality and DEWA to implement this system in their services as part of the second phase of the project.

H.E. Sami Al Qamzi, Director General of DED, said: “The pioneering use of this technology in the Department of Economic Development will allow us to set the gold standard for smart government communications worldwide and vastly enhance the experience of visitors to our online services. With the implementation of this technology we expect to see even greater efficiency and levels of excellence in the government services we provide every day.”

Unlike other well-known computing systems, the Watson system can collect data from all sources, from research reports and reading millions of unorganized documents within a few seconds through reading tweets on various social media. It then analyzes, processes, organizes and classifies these data to meet customers’ needs.