Digital technologies and connections are becoming more important to how Victorians access services and information to support their lives. We need to ensure that we are ready to embrace technological opportunities which can provide better access to services and improve everyone’s quality of life.
Technology is important for everyday life, from the mobile phones we use to the latest apps and smart home appliances. Technology has unlocked new ways of communicating, working, moving, accessing services and connecting. The coronavirus pandemic has highlighted the critical role technology can play in keeping people connected and has allowed Victorians to adapt in ways we would not have thought possible.
Digital technology can help us to connect with more people and deliver better services. Digital connectivity can help:
- better coordinate traffic flows through integrated timetabling and journey mapping
- deliver health services remotely though telehealth services
- provide education services to Victorians living in rural areas
- improve business productivity using smart technologies and automation
- improve the efficiency of public services, for example by digitising courts systems and police services.
In the long term, technology can change the infrastructure that Victoria needs. But to take full advantage of the opportunities digital connectivity provides, we need to ensure no one is left behind. This means helping more Victorians to be connected online.
What are our draft recommendations?
Immediately begin updating transport regulations to allow automated vehicle operation on the road network. In the next 10 years, upgrade roads and communications infrastructure to help facilitate increasingly connected and automated vehicles, particularly for corporate and government fleets. Develop policy, business case and land use planning guidance to maximise the benefits of automated vehicles.
In the next five years, develop open access ticketing platforms to facilitate integration of public transport modes with new mobility services, incorporating better data sharing and collection. Remove public transport contract barriers to integration. ft recommendation 19
In the next five years, integrate management systems for different road-based transport modes. Allow for real-time management and communication and prepare roads for emerging transport technologies.
Within five years, help slow the growth in demand for hospital infrastructure by funding a comprehensive statewide health innovation strategy to promote better models of healthcare.
Immediately increase court efficiency and meet demand by digitising suitable court systems and procedures. Invest in new contemporary, adaptable, multi-jurisdictional court facilities during the next 10 years.
In the next 10 years, invest in technological capacity to better support a responsive police service, and deliver infrastructure to enable a contemporary hub-and-spoke policing model, co-located with health and human services where appropriate.
Immediately consider expanding the Victorian legislated definition of critical infrastructure beyond energy, water and transport. Expand information sharing capabilities across and beyond critical infrastructure sectors.
In the next five years, continue delivering regional digital connectivity improvements, and review the need for further government investment following the roll-out of the Digital Future Now initiative.
In the next 10 years, develop more resilient regional telecommunications infrastructure so communities can stay safe during emergencies, including greater network redundancy and back-up power supply.
Immediately fund regional and rural libraries to improve community access to fast, free internet services, leveraging existing library infrastructure.
Retrofit or better use selected rural school infrastructure for children’s specialist and allied telehealth services to improve children’s health and development. Immediately begin with a trial in Wimmera Southern Mallee.
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