On the basis of the Senate Resolution on the Development of the Digitization Strategy for Berlin (September 2018, Drs. 18/1336), the process of developing a digital strategy commenced, as stipulated in the Berlin government coalition agreement of December 2016. The strategy process is coordinated by the Senate Department for Economics, Energy and Public Enterprises, but all Senate Departments are offered the opportunity to actively participate in its preparation.
The aim of the digital strategy is “a Berlin worth living in, which will ensure access and opportunities for all Berliners even in the digital age” (Drs. 18/1336, p. 1). The Senate “wants to help shape the digital transformation in Berlin according to the principles of sustainability, participation and economic development” (ibid.) and to support the “Senate departments in the implementation and coordination of their digital policy projects” (ibid.). At the end of the strategy process “a strategy document should be available describing the digital policy goals and concrete individual measures in the participating ministries” (ibid.).
The process is planned to last 18-24 months and will be accompanied by a civic participatory process. “Essential stakeholders should be identified at an early stage and integrated into the strategy process via dialogue formats” (ibid.). In February 2019, before the start of the strategy process, an award procedure was carried out to commission a service provider to accompany the development of the digitisation strategy, which was selected with the participation of several senate administrations. The contract was given to Ernst & Young in the April 2019. Immediately thereafter, the joint development of the strategy in a two-stage Green Paper and White Paper process began. At the beginning of the Quarter 4 of 2019, the Green Paper is to be published as an inventory of the current situation in Berlin. In June 2020, the White Paper is to be completed as a concrete strategy paper with defined implementation steps.
Structure and timeframe of the digitisation strategy process
- Defining the steering committee: The Senate appoints a State Secretary-level Steering Committee to formulate the strategic objectives and steer the entire strategy process.
- Green Paper – Formulating the current situation and hypotheses: An inventory and frame of reference with fields of action is drawn up. On the basis of this, gaps are to be identified. On this basis, questions and hypotheses are developed. (6-10 months). The Green Paper should be presented at the beginning of the fourth quarter (see answer to the Parliament’s Written Question No 18/18374).
- White Paper – Strategy development and participation: “In target group-specific dialogue events with stakeholder groups, the hypotheses of the status report are systematically discussed and translated into solutions for the specific situation in Berlin. Berliners should be given the opportunity to comment on and support the strategy development process digitally using suitable instruments.” (ibid. p. 2) (6-10 months).
- White Paper – Implementation Plan: “The implementation plan will be drawn up together with the strategy development. […] Regular reporting to the House of Representatives (Berlin Parliament) and the public is ensured in the continuation of the communication process (ibid). The White Paper should be finalised in June 2020 as a concrete strategy paper with implementation steps (see answer to Written Question No 18/18374): “Various stakeholder groups from Berlin will be integrated in the development process in order to do justice to the complexity of the facts and complexity of the whole city. The main results of the Senate’s digital policy work can be communicated to the urban society as a result”. (ibid.).
Governance of the strategy process:
- Steering Committee (StS-Lenkungskreis): Central state secretary-level steering committee that makes the essential decisions on the digital strategy. They come from all participating senate departments, each of which sends a state secretary.
- Supporting Working-Group: The supporting wokring-group is coordinated by the Senate Department for Economic Affairs, Energy and Enterprises and consists of the digital policy coordinators of the participating senate administrations.
- Public Participation: “Together with the actors from society, business and science, Berlin’s digital future is to be shaped on a permanent basis using suitable formats”. For example, through established governance structures or other institutions such as a digital advisory board.
- External support: The digitisation strategy process should be supported by external representatives. The external commission was contractually agreed at the beginning of April 2019 (See answer to the Parliament Written Question No 18/18374).
- The service company is not yet known to us. (Note: It has been known since June that the service company Ernst&Young has been commissioned).
References and links
Schriftliche Anfrage der Abgeordneten Katalin Gennburg und Tobias Schulze (LINKE) vom 27. März 2019 zum Thema: Digitalisierungsstrategie für Berlin – Wie ist der Stand? Und Antwort vom 11. April 2019 (Eingang beim Abgeordnetenhaus am 16. April 2019)
Drucksache 18/1336, Der Senat von Berlin, WiEnBe – III B 6/ III B 1 Vo – 90 13 (913) – 82 57
„Berlin Gemeinsam Gestalten. Solidarisch. Nachhaltig. Weltoffen. Koalitionsvereinbarung 2016-2021“, vom 8. Dezember 2016, Berlin.