The European Commission has outlined an ambitious programme to work with Member States' public authorities to expand and improve the services which they offer via the Internet. The new eGovernment Action Plan foresees forty specific measures over the next five years to enable citizens and businesses to use online facilities to, for example, register a business, apply for and access social security and health benefits, enrol in a university or bid to provide goods and services for public administrations. Promoting eGovernment can help boost Europe's competitiveness and allow public authorities to offer improved services more cost-effectively at a time of budget constraints.

This is why it is a fundamental part of the Digital Agenda for Europe, which aims to increase the use of eGovernment services by citizens to 50%, and by businesses to 80% by 2015 (see IP/10/581, MEMO/10/199 and MEMO/10/200). The new Action Plan builds on experience gained with the 2006 European eGovernment Action Plan (see IP/06/523).

Neelie Kroes, Commission Vice President for the Digital Agenda, said “This eGovernment Action Plan will help public authorities to use information & communication technologies to offer better services at lower cost, while making life easier and better for individual citizens and businesses in terms of improved access to public services."

Full press release (IP/10/1718)

My vision for eGovernment, and how to make it real- Speech by Vice-President of the European Commission responsible for the Digital Agenda Neelie Kroes at "Lift-Off towards Open Government" conference, Brussels, 15 December 2010

eGovernment Action Plan - what would it do for me? (MEMO/10/681)

Pilot projects show the way in easy access to online public services across the EU (MEMO/10/680 with more info on large-scale pilot projects STORK, PEPPOL, and SPOCS)

The European eGovernment Action Plan for 2011-2015

Malmö Ministerial Declaration on eGovernment press release

eGovernment Conference 'Lift Off Towards Open Government'

The European eGovernment Action Plan for 2006-2010

Digital Agenda for Europe

STORK (Secure Identity Across Borders Linked)

PEPPOL (Pan-European Public Procurement Online)

SPOCS (Simple Procedures Online for Cross-border Services)

epSOS (Smart Open Services for European Patients)