THE Asia Pacific College (APC) and the University of Adelaide (UoA) recently signed a memorandum of understanding that will provide relevant programs for several Philippine government agencies and bureaus, which are expected to help them achieve their goals under the “Philippine Digital Transformation Roadmap.”
The program, to be funded by Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, is aimed at providing opportunities and avenues for various Philippine sectors to improve through cooperative learning and training.
“The opening stages will commence in February [2024, and run until May of the same year. It will comprise of a group going to Australia, where they will spend time with our State and Federal Governments to get an understanding about how we embrace digital…They will come back and look at gaps…and opportunities…here in the Philippines, then] develop action plans for the relevant agencies,” Dr. Jessica Gallagher, who is UoA’s deputy vice chancellor and vice president, told the BusinessMirror in an exclusive interview.
For the first phase, five Philippine government agencies will be joining the program: the Civil Service Commission, Department of Budget and Management, Department of Trade and Industry, Department of Information and Communications Technology, as well as the National Economic and Development Authority.
“It’s quite a broad group, and I think that’s what makes it exciting,” said Dr. Gallagher, then added that there’s a part involving immersion, plus “unpacking and understanding the needs here,” so they can support the country’s digital transition.
The program, the UoA official explained, will provide a chance for participants to see what works and what does not in Australia, “so they can learn from our mistakes, and not do those.”
She said the program would enable the exchange of knowledge and experiences with the university, while it will also share good practice and understand complexities in the Philippines, and requirements for the next training.
According to Dr. Gallagher, the first part of the training would require digital transformation, while the second would involve digitalization skills.
Participating Filipino government workers will be training in Australia for a couple of weeks, while subject-matter experts from APC and UoA will deliver the courses. The program will provide mentors, coaches, and facilitators sound understanding of the Philippines and its context related to digital transformation in the public sector.
Present during the signing were Ambassador HK Yu of Australia, Civil Service Commission chair Karlo Nograles, Dr. Gallagher and APC officials.