Hungarian Charter of Information Technology, Inforum, 2000

2008. október 20 · Kategória: Documents 

This document, which summarizes the main considerations of Hungarian Information Technology, was written to draw attention to the primary government, legal and social actions necessary for accelerating the long-term modernization of Hungary including the development of informatics and technology.

Compared with the majority of the EU countries, Hungarian is in a difficult economic and technological position. The European Union, on the other hand, legs behind the United States in terms of the development of information technology. Hence, Hungary faces a double disadvantage. The EU has been investigating the Information Society for a long time and has completed a document called „eEurope”. Consequently, the Hungarian society should also face this question. Hungary should not only join the EU initiatives, but also maintain its relative regional competitive edge and close up with the EU and even the United States. As a result of globalization, those countries, which will not be able to cope with the technological, infrastructural and professional integration, will be disqualified from the investment and job markets. Hungary cannot close up the economic gap without programs of government strategy, legal harmonization, information technology, and economic-social development.

Several studies have been published on the challenge and response of Information Society in the last decade. The government and academic studies made by professionals have no evoked concrete laws or strategies, yet.

The Conciliatory Forum of Hungarian Informatics issued the Hungarian Charter of Information Technology (including the government and social tasks necessary for the mid- and long-term strategy of Hungary) so that Hungary could close up the technology gap as soon as possible. The Conciliatory Forum of Hungarian Informatics and the informatics experts support the Government and the Parliament and co-operate with the whole society in order to achieve the information society.

This document summarizes the main propositions to the government and the whole society. It is neither a government project nor an academic study; hence, this document does not intend to provide a thorough description of all related topics. On the contrary, it tries to draw attention to the key practical duties urgent for the Hungarian economy and society, as well.

Objectives

 

1.) Government Priority in Information Technology

2.) In-Service Administration

3.) Competitive and Modernized Economy

4.) Education and Training for the Information Society

5.) Extensive Information Culture

6.) Online Access to Information

7.) Assisting the Disabled in Information Technology

 


1.) Government Priority in Information Technology

The Government should focus on the questions of information technology and the information society.

The Government and the Parliament should be dealing with the challenge of information society and the technological modernization of Hungary. There should be a considerable development in the use of information technology. An empowered leader should be assigned to co-ordinate the actions related to information technology. Laws should be made and ratified to promote Hungary’s technological development and guarantee the legal, social, moral and economic background for the widespread use of these modern technologies.

 Examples

  • A permanently refreshed Hungarian information strategy based on former government and professional studies and related laws should be developed.
  • An empowered leader should be assigned to co-ordinate the actions related to information technology. A new ministry responsible for R&D, future strategy, information technology and management should be formed.
  • Laws must be made – according to the law on digital signatures – on electronic trade, online access to administrative information, the right to communication and information.
  • By the example of ministry of communications and by the law on jurisdiction, other ministries should also involve the professional organizations in making laws on information technology.
  • Each law should comply with the EU standards and practices; i.e. practical feasibility studies and surveys must precede it whether it harmonizes with the requirements of the information society and modern age.
  • Regular surveys should be conducted on the government’s expenditure on information technology.

 

 

2.) Service Provider Administration

The Administration must use the latest results of information technology in order to service the Hungarian public and to promote the model of a service provider state.

A new administration model should be developed by EU standards. The Government must lead by example in building the information society. Laws must be made to ensure electronic information and communication. An online administration and database should be elaborated and online government information must be published so as to guarantee a compliant institutional operation. The terms of public information must be identified and the citizens must have the right to express their own opinions freely. The uncontrolled and free access to all data, databases and information of general interest must be also guaranteed.

Examples

  • The electronic documents in the external and internal communication of the Government and the Parliament must accept as well as other traditional forms of documents.
  • There must be a Government website where all news, decrees, events and decisions can be easily accessible. There must be a regular electronic information channel of the Government.
  • The information systems of the Tax Office, Social Security, hospitals, cultural and community institutions must be more customer-oriented.
  • Electronic client-service in public administration should be improved.
  • Local governments’ community information should be accessible on the Internet.
  • Compatibility and cable connection among local governments’ systems should be ensured.

3.) Competitive and Modernized Economy

The economic background should enhance the use of high information technologies in order to ensure the global competitiveness of the Hungarian economy.

A knowledge-oriented strategy of the Hungarian economy should be developed with respect to information based technical-economic changes. The small and medium enterprises should be provided with financial aid to acquire modern technologies and R&D procedures. Employers must be supplied with financial and legal solutions so as to be able to give their employees the latest technologies. Foreign investment in innovative industries must be accelerated and the introduction of modern technologies and solutions should be ensured. Financial and legal solutions must support the use and introduction of electronic transactions, trade and communication in the economy and society. Home-working opportunities must be supported, as well. A special sponsoring system should be developed to promote Hungarian enterprises to penetrate into foreign markets. Hungary should be the regional center of information technology.

Examples

  • A new and modern economic strategy should be developed to deal with information and communication technologies and added values.
  • Companies supporting their employees’ development and training in modern technologies should be guaranteed tax exemptions and discounts for purchasing informatics equipment.
  • Innovative Hungarian enterprises should be provided with extra support.
  • The depreciation period of informatics equipment should be reduced.
  • Hungary should join to the WTO Singapore Agreement.
  • The multinational companies investing in high technology and R&D in Hungary should be given special allowances.


4.) Education and Training for the Information Society

A new structure of education should be developed to provide graduates with competitive knowledge in informatics and foreign languages so as to lay down the foundations for continuous self-development and trainings.

Education should be guaranteed the most modern tools, equipment, books and electronic information so that they can be accessed from anywhere in Hungary. High-school graduates should obtain appropriate practical skills in managing information equipment and tools. College and university graduates should obtain higher skills in managing information equipment and tools. A competitive staff should be retained in college level education of informatics. Adult education and trainings should include the use of information equipment and certificates by EU standards. Online systems of distance learning should also be developed. Special knowledge, information and research databases; innovation, information and news centers; enterprises, educational and non-profit institutions should be established which will be dealing with the research and implementation of future technologies.

Examples

  • Access to the Internet and e-mails should be guaranteed to every student and institution.
  • The SchoolNet program should be enhanced.
  • The network of researchers should e enhanced.
  • High-school graduates should obtain ECDL certificates as well as practical skills in informatics.
  • Special informatics training and education should be enhanced.
  • The number of college students in informatics should be increased and the personnel and technical conditions of education should be improved.
  • Programs to support the preparation of the public for the information society should be launched.

5.) Extensive Information Culture

The cultural environment should support and enhance the use of information technologies in culture and public education.

The public should be trained to use electronic information tools and systems properly. The online service of intellectual products should be promoted in order to ensure the improvement of the electronic distribution systems and publication conditions of the national heritage. The balance of copyrights, reprographic fees and database law should be established with respect to the long-term interests of the society. The technical support of the Hungarian expertise should promote the expansion of Hungarian language databases and the access to the results in foreign languages. The Hungarian culture should obtain its fair position in global databases.

Examples

  • The online access to libraries, archives, and other public collections should be gradually ensured.
  • The government should support the development of online contents.
  • Sponsoring systems should be created to develop the Internet media onto the level of traditional media.
  • The Internet Websites presenting Hungary in foreign languages should be supported.

6.) Online Access to Information

The access to information and the right to social communication should be guaranteed by the tools of information technology.

The technical and contextual conditions of the access to information should be guaranteed. The right of free access to information should be guaranteed. Local, civil, social, self-government or other public and private information systems of general interest and their connection should be ensured. The information distribution and client-service systems should be enhanced. The financing and social and government control of public information services should be developed and ensured. The distribution of electronic media to each household and community should be enhanced. Programs promoting the communication and informatics investments of families and small communities should also be supported. The access to and the use of telecommunication services should be affordable and budget based. Public information and communication centers should be established where everyone could use the equipment necessary for social and economic communication.

Examples

Each family and institution should be provided with affordable access to the Internet.

Laws should guarantee the right of free access to information and communication in Hungary.

The information services of self-governments and communities should be supported by legal and tax allowances.

The role of the protection of consumer interests in media and telecommunication services should be enhanced.

The prices of the access to the Internet should be reduced and the freely accessible public information should be identified.

Telecommunication centers and distance working opportunities should be supported.

7.) Assisting the Disabled in Information Technology

Communication and informatics tools should be used to assist the disabled.

The methodological and informational background of distance learning and the preparation of the disabled for reliable strategies should be enhanced by government and social programs and projects. Hungary cannot afford to neglect the intellectual potential outside regular workplaces (e.g. the physically challenged, the unemployed, the old, women on child care leave, etc.).

Examples

  • Programs on the use of modern technology should be launched for the unemployed and those who do not earn.
  • Employee retraining programs should be enhanced.
  • Institutions for the disabled should be guaranteed priority in information equipment and hardware investments.
  • A central fund should be established to finance the hardware supply for the disabled so as to increase their employment opportunities.
  • The computer access of the physically disabled (blind, deaf, etc.) and related programs should be developed and improved.
  • Central projects should be launched to enhance the information of the disabled.

 

 

April, 2000.
Gabor Dombi

Secretary General

Inforum