People are accustomed to use their mobile phones to order food or a taxi ride, to book flights, and to check the results of sports events. This is also the world in which public services operate. The goal of public service providers is to better meet the changed expectations of citizens and to develop digital public services that are increasingly easy to use. The Digital Helsinki programme accelerates the digitalization of the City services openly and through experimentation with citizens.

Experimentation with confidence

The perspective and needs of users are more important than, for example, the traditional operating model of the City. User orientation means that services work in the manner that users want them to work.

Less paperwork, more time to help and care

Functional digital services can save both money and time. When citizens manage more of their affairs online, there is more time for face-to-face interaction with those people who cannot use online services or who need more than just the simplest services.

Functional digital services developed through cooperation of several actors

The development of digital City services does not only mean that services are easy to use and look good. Behind the scene, the data systems of different services are combined and operating models are made uniform.

More and diverse users and stakeholder groups are engaged in the development of services. The co-creation will be supported from here on by Helsinki Lab, a new organization established to ensure that the City will be increasingly user-oriented in the future.

For example, Helsinki Region Infoshare opens the City’s public data to be used freely by anybody. The data can be used to develop apps, for example, for public transport or a new version of the Service Map that helps users to find City services.

The Digital Helsinki programme was launched in the spring of 2016. A steering group representing various administrative sectors was named for the programme in May. The steering group will select the programme’s first themes for experimentation and other development targets.