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NEWS RELEASE
For Immediate Release
Mon, 12 Mar 2012
Contact: Alison Heaphy
(518) 442-4598

UAlbany’s Center for Technology in Government To Work with Republic of Moldova on Social Media and Open Government

The Center for Technology in Government at the University at Albany-SUNY is traveling to the Republic of Moldova to help the government develop a strategy for social media adoption and to participate in Moldova Open Government Day, an event sponsored by the World Bank Institute and Open Government Partnership. These activities are part of a broader effort by Moldova to participate in knowledge exchanges on the potential of Information and Communications Technology (ICT)-enabled transformation to raise the awareness and increase the skills of Moldovan policymakers and ICT sector specialists to plan and implement ICT policies.

Moldova is a small country of 3.6 million people, which declared its independence from the Soviet Union in 1991 and has since experienced political stability and maintained a steady economic growth. According to the World Bank, “Determined to leverage information and communication technologies (ICTs) to enhance government performance and global competitiveness, the government of Moldova joined the World Bank financed Governance E-Transformation Project, which aims to improve public sector governance and economic competitiveness, build human capital, and promote social inclusion.”

“[Moldovan leaders] have chosen the route of e-transformation because of the firm belief that ICTs can modernize the Republic of Moldova,” said Victor Bodiu, Secretary General of the government of Moldova [as told to the World Bank]. “We are ready to learn from global champions in the area of e-governance…to become more competitive and raise the standards of life in Moldova.”

Theresa Pardo, director of CTG, and Jana Hrdinova, program associate, will travel to Moldova the week of March 12, 2012 to contribute to these ongoing efforts to exchange knowledge on ICT-related issues in Moldova. The first part of the trip involves participation in several sessions of the Moldova Open Government Day, which are geared towards helping Moldova develop its National Open Government Action Plan in order to join the Open Government Partnership. Part of the day will be live Webcast by the World Bank to allow for stakeholders and international experts to discuss next steps in Moldova's commitment to open budget data.

“Moldova has committed to the open government principles of increasing transparency, fighting against corruption, increasing citizen participation and access to information, and to fostering participatory decision-making,” said Dr. Pardo. “CTG is honored to take part in their efforts to formally join the Open Government Partnership in April.”

Following Moldova Open Government Day, CTG will be conducting a two-day training on social media for government representatives covering topics such as access, account management and maintenance, management of agency- and citizen-generated content, management of citizen engagement, and more. After the training, CTG will work with staff from Moldova's E-Government Center to produce a set of recommendations and draft a Social Media Guide to be considered for adoption by Moldovan state agencies. The training is being sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, as part of the Embassy Lecture Series.

“Our social media training will introduce the government participants to some of the challenges associated with adopting social media tools in government, and address some of the management issues connected with using social media in government workspace,” said Jana Hrdinova, CTG program associate and co-author of the report, Designing social media policy for government: Eight essential elements.

The mission of the Center for Technology in Government at the University at Albany is to foster public sector innovation, enhance capability, generate public value, and support good governance. We carry out this mission through applied research, knowledge sharing, and collaboration at the intersection of policy, management, and technology. For more information visit www.ctg.albany.edu.

The University at Albany-SUNY has a broad mission of excellence in undergraduate and graduate education, life-enhancing research and scholarship, and a commitment to public service. A University at Albany education brings the world within reach to students through nine schools and colleges, and an honors college. A student body of more than 17,000 students has a global connection to more than 140,000 alumni. For more information about this internationally ranked institution, visit www.albany.edu. For UAlbany's extensive roster of faculty experts, visit www.albany.edu/news/experts.htm.