Today, the Indian government has a system that allows every citizen to have a unique identification number and be authenticated using fingerprints with a networked system that works across multiple sectors such as tax returns, bank accounts, etc. would be very difficult to explain. Even her SIM card in her cell phone. This is the impact of technology in the area of governance. In many cases, governments have always embraced new technology slowly and steadily, but when they do, they also do it perfectly, ensuring that the “digital divide” is as close to zero as possible.
We have come a long way since the internet age. We see a new digital-first tech space. This era of connectivity, dubbed Web3, is already seeing many positive impacts, including but not limited to gaming, digital currency, collectibles, etc. This is a unique attribute of digital distributed ledgers called blockchains. has even led to the creation of a digital world where digital identities are real.
This virtual digital universe, aptly called the Metaverse (which means it’s more of a “digital” universe than we know it), opens up many opportunities in the area of governance. Now is the time for e-Governance!
These are areas where the Metaverse could potentially address e-Governance, offering enormous benefits.
a call to the nation
The need for the country’s elected chiefs and chief executives to address the country, whether in situations of daily peace, special occasions like Independence Day or Republic Day, or times of political/military unrest. There are multiple cases where there are The Metaverse can create an environment where leaders can be present in virtually every home, allowing them to interact more closely with their citizens. This could also possibly open up the possibility of interactive sessions… though planned ahead.
Scheduled Dispute/Problem Remediation
Our country is an indirect democracy, with elected representatives at every level…from district council members to elected representatives who govern the country as a whole. With the Metaverse in place, it is impossible for people to rectify disputes with local representatives without having to go through the lengthy process of filing petitions that can get lost in the process. , to facilitate personal contact and communication with elected representatives of local bodies and to increase people’s trust in them.
After all, governance should start at the lowest level and work its way up and up.
can make the process smoother
In a country of nearly 1.3 billion people, managing a wide variety of documents can be very difficult. The metaverse can be an electronic governance solution that eases many cumbersome and difficult processes. Let’s take a simple example of a passport. The current system, while much more streamlined than it used to be, still requires a person to go directly to the passport office/PSK, submit documents, get a photo, and complete a process that takes about half a day. Police verification takes place a few days after the process, so passport approval and delivery may take longer.
By implementing e-Governance and the metaverse, passport officers can virtually connect with citizens and conduct business. The underlying blockchain technology is immutable, so identities cannot be forged. The whole process takes just a few minutes…and that too, both cops and citizens are comfortable without leaving their homes! One.
Democracy is a system that empowers people more than anyone else…and communities are an integral part of such initiatives. It can make society better by telling people who have a responsibility to do it.
Leveraging the Metaverse for e-Governance opens up the possibility for people to gather virtually, interact personally, and brainstorm ideas. After all, blockchain is about community…and so is governance in a democracy. Putting them together will only benefit society as a whole!
The current technical configuration of the Metaverse requires 5G internet or at least 4G speeds to be active on connected devices. However, it should be understood that in certain remote villages, even 3G internet access is scarce. While this may be a deterrent, it’s entirely possible that governments are already working to ensure geographically seamless connectivity, not just using the metaverse for e-government. No matter what, the iota of the digital divide will always exist…but sometimes it’s important to move forward and let the “divide” become irrelevant.
Technology has always enabled connection and connectivity. These are her two key ingredients for a functioning government. With the metaverse in place, e-government will become more accessible, efficient, and better. Governments have always been dedicated to making the process better for the people and solving the problems facing citizens. The Metaverse effectively augments the means already in place to achieve this goal.
The author is the co-founder and COO of Guardianlink.