On the 29th December 2015, the Department for Culture, Media and Sport announced that the Government would be planning a new Digital Strategy. It aims to ensure Britain continues its development into a nation where individuals and company can thrive using internet-based technologies. The importance of this five year strategy should not be underestimated. The government’s strategy is vital to guide the regulatory framework, set priorities for investment and infrastructure, and take steps to ‘futureproof’ the UK against shifting industry landscapes. Input from the public and private sector is important to ensuring this strategy succeeds and fulfils its potential.
The first important impact of this strategy is to guide the regulatory framework surrounding new technologies and inventions. Studying the ways in which issues surrounding privacy, rights ownership and cyber attacks are likely to evolve and change over the next five years can help government decide how to take action to mitigate these legislative concerns. These are still issues that government is grappling with, and a strategy that coalesces views from experts, those involved within the industry and viewpoints from other nations can help to bring more cohesion to the conclusions.
The second way in which the new Digital Strategy will prove to be important is by setting the priorities for government and industry investment. By looking at all future digital trends together, a priority list can be produced that will help to highlight to the government itself where to invest to build infrastructure for businesses to thrive; whether this be the Internet of Things, continued investment in mobile or digital server capacity. Communication between industry and government to discuss each others’ needs could also bring the potential to explore joint ventures in this area.
Finally, the Digital Strategy can prove important to ‘futureproof’ the UK against innovations in the next five years. It is likely that the internet will continue to adapt at a considerable pace, and therefore taking the time to stop and consider how Britain can prepare itself to meet these needs most effectively is an important element. Similarly, the dissemination of potential new innovations amongst businesses and public bodies through this strategy will also help companies adapt to future change. By taking stock now, pre-empting the next major change will help to ensure Britain remains at the forefront of change and is not left behind.
All three of these reasons show why the Digital Strategy Plan of the government is important to many of the thriving tech-based industries in the United Kingdom. It can be an opportunity to voice concerns, highlight opportunities and gain support.
The government needs to not rest on its laurels of the previous Digital strategy, but continue to strive to support the Digital industries in every way possible. The Digital Strategy will be an important document in setting these priorities. I urge all companies and public bodies to contribute their ideas to this plan to produce a more cohesive and meaningful strategy.