At Once, A Dearth Of Public Sector Tech Talent And Innovation Inertia

Anthony Brino | Government Health IT | December 18, 2013

The public sector is facing an IT workforce crisis: attracting too few technologists, tasking those that are found with managing outdated systems and failing to nurture the type of culture that could foster innovation.

In many ways, argues a report commissioned by the Ford and MacArthur foundations, the Department of Health and Human Service’s botched rollout of illustrates the problems on a grand scale and it “incited a highly visible debate about how the government develops and acquires technology and whether adequate expertise exists within government to pursue such large-scale technology systems,” according to a report by Freedman Consulting.

Despite recent signs of progress, such as federal, state and city governments creating CTO and equivalent positions, “deep questions remain about the ability for many areas of government and civil society to identify, cultivate, and retain individuals with the necessary skills for success in a world increasingly driven by information technology,” the report concluded.