Public Digital Backbone/Additional Related Topics

Uncover Hidden Treasures edit

To cover the multifaceted and complex topic like 'Public Digital Backbone' and a book on the topic we need to touch upon a number of related and cross connecting topics. This coverage and approach may help other contributors to think in various directions to enrich a book like this. So adding these topics. How much and how far deeper to go is of course optional and depends on tastes and choices of individual contributers and readers.

Financial Inclusion edit

Financial inclusion refers to the process of ensuring that individuals and businesses, regardless of their economic stature, have access to useful and affordable financial products and services, such as banking, credit, insurance, and pensions. It emphasizes the need to bridge the gap for those traditionally excluded from the formal financial system, ensuring they can participate in economic activities and safeguard their financial futures.


When it comes to Digital Public Infrastructure, the relevance of financial inclusion is pronounced. A well-developed digital infrastructure can facilitate seamless and cost-effective access to financial services, especially for those in remote or underserved areas. By integrating digital payment gateways, online banking platforms, and digital identification systems, public digital infrastructure can simplify and democratize access to financial resources. Furthermore, it can enable governments to directly transfer benefits to beneficiaries, reducing intermediaries and ensuring efficient delivery. Thus, robust Digital Public Infrastructure acts as a catalyst for financial inclusion, leveling the playing field for all citizens.

Financial inclusion

Public Distribution System edit

The Public Delivery System (PDS) pertains to the mechanism through which governments and public institutions offer essential services, goods, and benefits to the citizenry. It encompasses a range of services, from healthcare and education to welfare programs and public transportation.


Relevance to Digital Public Infrastructure is paramount. As we transition into an era where digital interfaces become integral to everyday life, an efficient and user-friendly digital infrastructure can drastically enhance the efficacy and reach of the PDS. Integrating digital tools can streamline service delivery, reduce bureaucratic delays, increase transparency, and ensure that benefits reach the intended recipients without leakage or corruption. Furthermore, digital platforms can offer real-time data and feedback, allowing governments to adapt and improve their service delivery mechanisms. In essence, a robust Digital Public Infrastructure can revolutionize the PDS, making it more responsive, accountable, and effective in meeting the needs of the public.

Public Distribution System (India)

Economic empowerment edit

Economic empowerment refers to the process of giving individuals, particularly marginalized or underrepresented groups, the means to achieve financial independence, increase their economic resources, and participate meaningfully in economic decision-making. It often involves measures to improve access to resources, education, and opportunities, allowing people to improve their quality of life and contribute more significantly to their communities.


Regarding Digital Public Infrastructure, economic empowerment is crucial. As the digital revolution continues, having accessible and inclusive digital infrastructure can provide individuals with the tools, resources, and opportunities they need to participate in the digital economy. This includes accessing online educational resources, engaging in e-commerce, or even availing government services efficiently. By ensuring that digital public infrastructure is universally accessible and designed with economic empowerment in mind, societies can bridge the digital divide and offer broader sections of the population the chance to thrive in a digitally-driven world.


Innovation edit

Innovation refers to the process of introducing new ideas, methodologies, or products, fundamentally improving existing systems or creating entirely novel solutions. It is often driven by a combination of creativity, research, and the desire to address specific challenges.


When considering Digital Public Infrastructure, innovation plays a pivotal role. As societies evolve, so do their needs and challenges. To ensure that digital infrastructures remain relevant, efficient, and capable of meeting the ever-changing demands of the public, continuous innovation is essential. By fostering a culture of innovation, governments and public institutions can ensure that their digital platforms and services are not only up-to-date but also adaptable and forward-looking. This proactive approach can lead to better resource utilization, enhanced service delivery, and the anticipation of future challenges, ensuring a resilient and responsive digital backbone for public services.


Public sphere edit

The "Public Sphere" is a concept introduced by philosopher Jürgen Habermas, referring to the space in society where individuals come together to freely discuss and identify societal problems, and through that discourse, influence political action. It's essentially the arena for democratic deliberation and civic engagement.


In the context of Digital Public Infrastructure, the idea of the Public Sphere is especially salient. As societies become increasingly digitized, the digital realm becomes a significant platform for public discourse, collaboration, and decision-making. Properly designed and implemented digital public infrastructures can facilitate a thriving digital public sphere, enabling transparent government-citizen interaction, fostering open dialogue, and enhancing civic participation. Ensuring that these digital platforms are accessible, inclusive, and free from undue influences becomes vital in preserving the integrity of the modern Public Sphere and promoting genuine democratic processes in the digital age.

Public sphere

Commons edit

The concept of "Commons" refers to resources that are collectively owned or shared between or among populations. These resources are typically managed and sustained by the community for the good of all. The Commons can be tangible, like public parks, or intangible, such as knowledge and digital assets.


For Digital Public Infrastructure, the idea of the Commons is especially pertinent. Just as a public park serves everyone without discrimination, digital infrastructures should be designed to be open, accessible, and beneficial for all members of society. Implementing the principles of the Commons in digital public infrastructure emphasizes the importance of shared ownership, decentralized control, and collaborative maintenance. By treating digital resources as a Commons, we ensure that technology serves the broader public interest, rather than being confined to proprietary interests or monopolistic control, thereby democratizing access and ensuring equitable benefits.


Open-source software edit

Open Source Software (OSS) refers to software whose source code is made available to the public, allowing anyone to view, modify, and distribute it. This contrasts with proprietary software, where the software's source code remains undisclosed and its use and distribution are subject to licensing conditions.


The relevance of OSS for Digital Public Infrastructure is multifaceted. Firstly, it fosters transparency, allowing stakeholders to scrutinize and verify the security and functionality of digital systems. Secondly, being open to modification, OSS can be tailored to cater to specific needs of communities, enhancing the adaptability of public digital solutions. Furthermore, OSS promotes collaboration, enabling a pooling of global expertise for continuous improvement. Economically, it can also reduce costs, as governments aren't bound to expensive proprietary licenses and can benefit from community-driven updates and patches. In essence, OSS aligns with the principles of public infrastructure – accessibility, transparency, and collective benefit.

Open-source software

e-governance edit

E-Governance refers to the application of information and communication technology (ICT) for delivering government services, exchanging information, communication transactions, integration of various stand-alone systems and services, and ensuring transparency in government processes. It encompasses a wide range of activities and services, from online voter registration to e-tax filing.


Relevant to Digital Public Infrastructure, e-governance stands as a testament to the transformative power of digital tools in public service delivery. Incorporating e-governance within digital public infrastructure can ensure more streamlined, efficient, and user-friendly processes, reducing bureaucratic red tape and enhancing transparency. Furthermore, it fosters a participatory environment, allowing citizens direct access and engagement with their governments, which can lead to more informed decision-making and greater trust in public institutions.


Social Entrepreneurship edit

Social entrepreneurship refers to the use of start-up and business principles to develop, fund, and implement solutions to social, cultural, or environmental issues. Unlike traditional business entrepreneurs who primarily aim to generate profits, social entrepreneurs focus on creating social capital, emphasizing sustainable solutions to pressing societal challenges.


When it comes to Digital Public Infrastructure, social entrepreneurship is highly relevant. As governments and public institutions move towards digitization, there's an increasing need for solutions that not only incorporate cutting-edge technology but also prioritize public welfare, accessibility, and inclusion. Social entrepreneurs can bridge the gap between technological innovation and societal needs, ensuring that digital public infrastructures serve all members of society efficiently, equitably, and ethically. Social_entrepreneurship