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Tech-Savvy Youth Is Training KP Government To Work More Efficiently

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Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (KP) has long been an underserved province of Pakistan, but in 2013, things started to change when the World Bank and its partners helped the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Information Technology Board (KPITB) to bring the province into digital age.

According to a World Bank report, the partnership, co-sponsored by Code for Pakistan, has resulted in the successful KP Government Innovation Fellowship Program which has produced tens of tech-savvy individuals who are now helping the provincial government work with better efficiency.

Since 2014, the technologists have worked with government agencies to help them become more user-centric and ultimately serve the public in a better and productive way. Technologists are divided into groups and tasked to help different government agencies and departments by bringing expertise in web or mobile app development, graphic design, content, user experience, or networks.

During the first month, the fellows learn how the government works. They interact with government officers and staff and know the problems faced by them. Then they devise solutions to the problems and develop prototypes which they first test and eventually implement in their last 2 months of the programme.

To date, four fellowship cycles have produced 70 graduates, who earned great experience within the government. The fellows has so far created 21 digital solutions for 15 government departments including the Bureau of Statistics, the Water and Sanitation Services, and the Provincial Disaster Management Authority, among many others.

After graduation, more than half of the fellows found jobs in the government or private sector, while about a third have become digital entrepreneurs or freelancers. They are also paid a monthly stipend for their services.

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Naya Daur