It’s not so long ago that outsourced cloud services were not an allowable cost under the A-87 grant rules for state, local and tribal governments. All that changed in December 2014 after a four-year campaign by NASCIO to welcome cloud into the government portfolio. It simply makes too much financial sense, as well as enabling innovation at a much faster rate.

Now, more and more government data, even related to criminal justice, is in the cloud. One of the big reasons given is that the cloud makes it easy to span agencies and jurisdictions.

GCN article on Coplink

Maggie Miller, CIO of New York State is planning bold moves: Govtech reports upgrades will be made from a “fiercely citizen-centric” point of view, including deploying strategic platforms that span agencies. One report suggested that $1.6bn savings were available through better coordination.

New York CIO Maggie Miller speaks

But what does citizen-centric mean? Is it simply a way of organizing information for faster retrieval? Does it simply mean that citizens can apply for more than one benefit in a portal? Or is it really about empowering citizens to take responsibility for their own cases? How does a citizen working with child welfare, workforce and criminal justice agencies keep all their case managers on the same page? How does a probation officer know that a client is attending job skills classes? Or that parenting classes conflict with job skills classes? Perhaps it is time to redefine citizen-centric. Let’s start thinking about empowering the citizens themselves to manage their own cases with the professionals surrounding them. Putting the citizens themselves in the middle of the dialog - not on the outside trying to peek in once a week – now that’s client-centric.