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GovStack spec launches. Aimed at nations short on development resources

GovStack spec launches. Aimed at nations short on development resources

An initiative created to help governments with few resources digitize their services, has launched its framework version 1 and is seeking product candidates.

Launched in 2020, GovStack‘s service was created to reduce the cost, time and resources required to create digital platforms and services. The project takes inspiration and practices from digital services champions such as Estonia, India and Singapore. It was founded by Estonia, Germany, International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and Digital Impact Alliance (DIAL)

Its software modules are use-case specific. GovStack defines the technical specifications for the building blocks and their APIs.

The consortium released a new version of specifications last week, including nine foundational building blocks: Identity verification, payments, consent, digital registries, messaging, information mediation, registration, scheduler and workflow. More than 80 tech experts from over 40 organizations contributed to this work, the organization says in a release. They specifications are meant to help developers of digital public goods and commercial software, and government IT leaders.

The GovStack initiative also plans to provide countries with digital government strategy, technical design and prototyping of digital services, as well as build capacity through training. Another goal for the initiative is creating a sandbox GovStack-compliant products.

The first version of GovStack was introduced by Jaume Dubois, CEO of digital identity company ID30 in a LinkedIn post. Dubois was part of the working group tasked with building an ID building block.

“The identity building block workgroup has developed the necessary APIs for onboarding of users in functional systems making a strong link with foundational ID, guaranteeing the uniqueness and the existence of the related individual behind the functional system,” says Dubois.

“This means for example, a social security service or a bank can make sure of the authenticity of the person behind the digital ID.”

Aside from ID30, the working group included representatives from MOSIP (Modular Open Source Identity Platform), the International Telecommunication Union, non-profit standardization organization the OpenID Foundation and India-based Technoforte.

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