Person:
Kaiser, Kai

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Last updated: January 31, 2023

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Technology for Results: Using Smartphones to Verify Results and Serve the Public in Vietnam’s Water Sector

2019-07, Kaiser, Kai, Chase, Claire, Hong, Hai Le Tuyen

The note serves to show how smartphones and digital platforms/workflows can be effectively used to collect and process validation data about decentralized/dispersed frontline results. The case study shows that World Bank operations can help bring this type of digital platform–based approach to more mainstream government processes, particularly in the context of Program for Results, in this case for the rural water supply and sanitation operations. The note documents both the checklist approach and the realization of a web-based platform established to disclose water and sanitation program planning documents and resources to the public, along with a call center to deal with customer questions and concerns. The experience speaks to the question of how more versatile technology (cloud platforms, smartphones) together with institutional drivers can set the stage for new generation digital platforms taking root in governments like Vietnam, where paper-based processes and reporting persist. While technology is clearly secondary to getting the people and process parts of the equation right, getting the technology wrong may adversely disrupt the reform process, strengthening opposition or perpetuating the status quo. The major value added for the World Bank may be to help design and demonstrate robust and versatile platforms, including as part of results-based operations aligning to country systems.