What will government look like in 2030? What will citizens expect from government? What will be the impact on service delivery, assets and systems? How will policy and regulation need to change in response?

These are the types of questions governments need to answer if they want to transform for the future.

KPMG has spoken to a broad range of government and public sector commentators – insiders, outsiders, disruptors and policy makers around the world to envision what the world might look like in 2030, how we got there and what the big challenges were along the way.

Their predictions include five areas of disruption and dramatic change.

Explore the summary below and download the full report to learn more about what leaders and disruptors from around the world had to say about the relationship between digital capabilities and customer-centric government services.

Key areas of disruption in 2030

1. A new relationship: Cognitive capabilities enable machines to interact with humans more seamlessly

Cognitive technologies enable natural and intuitive interactions
Government services are seamless and intuitive
Web 3.0 has unlocked the metaverse

In 2030, citizens have full control over their personal data. When you move home in 2030, you won't need to notify any government departments as you are the verifier of your own personal information. When the government needs to access your data for a specific reason, they will ping your digital ID to access it. Government organisations are relying heavily on digital capabilities available to them to deliver simple, cognitive and intuitive solutions – sensor and IoT data are used to predict citizens' needs, and the metaverse provides a channel for citizens to easily communicate with the government, healthcare professionals and private companies.

2. The transformation journey: Governments rethink models for a decentralised world

Web 3.0 and the metaverse have forced governments to rethink their role in a decentralised world
Government operating models have become more agile, cooperative and resilient
The shift to Web 3.0 is pushing transformation into new domains

In 2030, government organisations are realising what their roles and responsibilities look like in a decentralised world. This results in the creation of an operating model that is agile, flexible and resilient. A high percentage of government digital strategy will be focusing on the metaverse. As Web 2.0 becomes obsolete, the government needs to quickly build their metaverse capabilities in order to gather insights and act on them.

3. The decentralisation of data: The power shifts to the individual

Trust and data security have been completely redefined as new technologies like quantum computing become more accessible
Trust and data security are no longer an issue as data moves to blockchains
Governments have been forced to adapt in response

The advancement of Web 3.0, along with security breaches into the big cloud data lakes, heightened customer expectation on being able to take back control over their personal data. This forced the government to deliver a new system that will give citizens full control over their personal data whilst freeing themselves from concerns over data privacy and data ethics. In 2030, citizens fully control their encrypted secured personal data. As ownership of every piece of data is properly documented, trust is no longer an issue.

4. The citizen developer: Coding is democratised

Low-code/no-code solutions and automation tools are commonplace for governments
Citizen developers are transforming their lives and organisations
An infusion of digital natives and new capabilities are changing the nature of work

In 2030, low code/ no code platforms make it easy for everyone to create or customize an app – which means we have citizen developers everywhere. For government organisations, this capability means they can utilise government employees to create or customise their digital platforms – such as ERP software or accounting tool – based on their needs or circumstances. It helps them become more agile and customer-centric, and more importantly, it creates a culture of enhanced productivity and efficiency.

5. Sustainable growth enabled: Digitalisation helps achieve ESG goals

Progress on environmental, social and governance (ESG) agendas are accurately measured through Web 3.0 and the Internet of Things (IoT)
Digital twins and virtual worlds allow people to understand the impact of decisions
Government investment into new technologies and models has sparked sustainable growth

In 2030, meeting our sustainable goals has become so much easier. City planners and asset developers use digital twins and virtual worlds to simulate everything, from the development of the new transit systems through to the design of the individual components. This process allows city planners and developers to easily predict how their infrastructure projects will impact the environment. There are also significant government investments being made into an AI ecosystem and the metaverse that create new jobs, attract overseas talents, drive further investment and foster sustainable economic growth.

The future of digital government

What tangible steps can government and public sector organisations start taking today to transform the way they do things?

  1. Start fresh with a bold, holistic vision
    Refresh your approach. Instead of starting with the status quo, try starting with the citizen need.
  2. Learn about Web 3.0 technologies and trends
    Learn about it now to make sure you don't get left behind.
  3. Prepare your future talent and workforce models
    Develop and nurture talents to help you prepare for the Web 3.0.
  4. Reassess your governance models
    Decentralisation of data will require a new data protection approach.
  5. Picture yourself in the metaverse
    Start looking at how you might serve your citizens in the metaverse.
  6. Form your ecosystem
    Now is the time to start engaging in pilot projects that will help you thrive in a decentralised world.

A snapshot of Australia

In the early 2020s, NSW Government realised that the government didn’t need to flatten to deliver seamless, customer-centric services citizens were expecting. This realisation shifted the organisation’s focus onto creating services that highlighted the importance of data ownership and data privacy, as well as life journeys that made life easier for customers.

In the early 2020s, government essentially controlled citizens’ data. With more and more citizens expecting the government to hand back the control of their personal data, the government needed to come up with a different approach – one that allowed citizens access to services by providing digital identification. This approach helped service designers and policy makers to organise service offerings based on life journeys.  

In 2030, citizens can expect seamless, hyper personalised services and total control of their personal data. As investments have been made to fully integrate the physical and digital channels, citizens are able to move freely from one channel to the other to access their required service. Government organisations rely on analytics and customer insights to continuously adjust their service offerings based on customer needs.

People thought technology alone would flatten governmental silos. It did not.

Greg Wells
Government Chief Information and Digital Officer
NSW Government

Digital first, customer centric government services – KPMG can help

The teams at KPMG Australia have years of experience in assisting various clients, including government organisations, develop and implement digital transformation strategies aimed at providing seamless, customer-centric services. We bring together a diverse range of technical and professional skills – government specialists, digital strategists, digital engineers, marketing and customer service specialists and more – that will help transform your end-to-end processes to deliver on the expected outcomes.

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