First International Electronic Governance with Emerging Technologies Conference (EGETC)

As the general co-chair of the First International Conference in Electronic Governance with Emerging Technologies (EGETC-2022), I sincerely invite you to consider your participation as authors and presenters or the attendees in this event.

First International Electronic Governance with Emerging Technologies Conference
First International Electronic Governance with Emerging Technologies Conference

Over the last decade, the importance of emerging technologies in government and public administrations has grown significantly. The growing demand for services that better meet changing user expectations for responsiveness and personalization, coupled with higher expectations of the role of government in the digital age, calls for a technologically mature public sector. There are many new emerging technologies serving as enablers to new forms of governance and novel applications in traditional governance functions, which role has been witnessed across various domains, including healthcare, medicine, education, tourism, and industry etc.. 

The aim of the First International Conference in Electronic Governance with Emerging Technologies (EGETC-2022) is to provide a forum for academics, scholars, and practitioners from academia and industry to share and exchange the recent developments in the domain of eGovernment and governance of digital organizations to shed light on the emerging research trends and their applications. 

Topics of interest include, but not limited to:

  • Intelligent systems for coordination in crisis emergency management
  • Distributed ledgers and Blockchains: governance, decentralized autonomous organizations (DAO)
  • Machine Learning (ML), Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Big Data management for Public Sector
  • Privacy, security and legal Informatics – AI and Law
  • Open Data, Open Government Data: transparency, trust, public participation, co-creation and Open Innovation
  • Digital transformation and Society 5.0
  • Linked Data, Linked Open Data (LOD)
  • Semantic E-government applications
  • Public Sector Knowledge Representation
  • Decision Support Systems (DSS) in Digital Governance
  • Natural Language Processing (NLP)
  • Cloud Computing
  • Bots, Automation agents, Self-learning systems 
  • Cryptocurrencies and incentive mechanism design
  • Multimedia and multilingual systems

It is particularly important that, in order to ensure the widest possible participation of communities, despite the availability of funding, the conference does not foresee any charges. I.e. both authors and presenters, and attendees/ listeners are welcome without registration fees.

First International Electronic Governance with Emerging Technologies  Conference (author: Anastasija Nikiforova)

In addition to the great team of organizers and members of the program committee, which has a rich list of outstanding experts, participants of this event will have an opportunity to enjoy the keynote speeches by Prof. Marijn Janssen – Full Professor in ICT & Governance at TU Delft, Netherlands, Dr. B K Murthy, CEO – Innovation and Technology Foundation, IIT Bhilai, Prof. Luis Martinez – Full Professor, University of Jaén, Jaén Spain. More information on their talk will follow…

Accepted papers presented at the EGETC2022 will be published in the proceeding published by Springer in Lecture Notes in Computer Science series (approval pending…). A short list of best papers will be invited for a post-conference publication in Government Information Quarterly (GIQ), Elsevier, Q1, Cite Score: 11.6, Impact Factor: 7.279 and Technological Forecasting and Social Change, An International Journal, Elsevier, Q1, Cite Score: 12.1, Impact Factor: 8.593.

If you are interested in submitting your paper, add to your calendar the submission date – May 30, while the event will take place during September 12-14, 2022.

Due to the unpredictability of the current situation in the light of pandemic, we expect to have a hybrid event, i.e. both online and on-site participation will be possible. For the later mode, we will be very glad to meet participants, who will be able to attend the event physically, in peaceful and spectacular city of Tamaulipas, Mexico in mid-September, 2022. Hope to meet you there!!!

2021 Summary

Here is the time to summarize the events, activities and achievements of 2021. Although there were some challenges and issues hat have been overcome, it was quite fruitful, and I am absolutely grateful for that. Therefore, in this post I would like to refer to positive events and their results.

Perhaps the first achievement to be mentioned is the LATA award. More specifically, this year, for my research, public activity and other achievements, the LATA (Latvian Open Technologies Association) has recognized me as a person of the year and has awarded me for promoting open data and open technologies. I believe it gave me strength, forces and inspiration for future activities.

So, I have worked hard this year, both independently and with some very skilled and intelligent colleagues, and this gave some results. In short:

  • 16 papers, including one chapter (some of them will be officially published in 2022), 6 conference papers, 9 journal articles, including 6 articles in Q1 journals. Some of these articles have been recommended by international organizations, including the world’s largest and most significant open data portal, the Open Data Daily (PSI Monitor), World Health Organization, Europe PMC and FreeMedArt etc.;
  • 7 international conferences attended as a speaker with 5 papers, 2 posters, 2 more talks on the results of ongoing projects and 1 invited talk. Thank you RCIS (International Conference on Research Challenges in Information Science), ICEGOV (International Conference on Theory and Practice of Electronic Governance “Smart Digital Governance for Global Sustainability“), IDSTA (International Conference on Intelligent Data Science Technologies and Applications), IoTSMS (International conference on Internet of Things, Systems, Management and Security), EBW (European Biobank week), International Conference and Expo on Nanotechnology and Nanomaterials – it was a really great experience, and it is great that, despite the pandemic, you have managed to organize such great events with such a nice audience and brilliant speakers (both participants and keynotes).

Some of these activities were the results of very independent non-funded studies (mostly relates to open (government) data-related studies), others were the results of projects in which I was involved in recent months and years:

Over the next months, I have joined several associations and teams with which we have worked on different topics. In particular:

  • joined the above mentioned European Open Science Cloud (EOSC) Task Force “FAIR metrics and data quality”;
  • became a part of Quantum Humanities Network hosted by the university of Jena (Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena, Germany), which is represented by researchers from Germany, Spain, Finland, Latvia and Romania. With the colleagues forming this network, the application for CHANSE funding has been submitted and has already successfully passed the first round of review.
  • became an expert of the Latvian Council of Sciences – (1) Natural Sciences – Computer Science and Informatics and (2) Engineering and Technology-Electrical Engineering, Electronics, Information and Communication Technologies (ICT);
  • became a part of BBMRI-ERIC node, Quality Management Task Force;
  • and even took part (although in a tiny activity) in providing an input for proposal for a European Interoperability Framework for Smart Cities and Communities (EIF4SCC) – the study conducted by Deloitte and KU Leuven (Belgium) for the European Commission.

In addition, although I had some experience in reviewing papers for both journals and conferences, this year I took a step further and became part of the Editorial Board and / or Editor for several venues and even became the general chair of one international conference. More precisely:

In addition, I have gained a new experience of delivering Invited Talks and Guest Lectures. The Invited Talk entitled “Open Data as a driver of Society 5.0: how you and your scientific outputs can contribute to the development of the Super Smart Society and transformation into Smart Living? was delivered during the International Conference and Expo on Nanotechnology and Nanomaterials, which organizers have invited me to speak about the open science and its role in current scientific community. For the Guest Lectures, they were two – (1) Open data: ecosystem, current and future trends, success stories and barriers, the University of South-Eastern Norway (USN) (Norway, web-based), (2) Open data potential, LU Faculty of Social Sciences/ Institute for Social and Political Studies, Latvia. I am grateful to both, the colleagues who have invited me and the audience – I was very surprised by your passionate for the knowledge and lively discussion we had at the end of these lectures. Although here I should also refer to my own students and particularly Accenture students – you really are a dream audience. And thank you for your very positive feedback you left – it is my pleasure and I am so pleased that you really appreciate the efforts I have invested in my lectures and courses and feel my support.

In addition, there were some local activities and achievements, such as:

  • developed and successfully launched a course for master and doctoral students (Faculty of Computer Science), entitled “Open government data in a data-driven world” (3 ECTS),
  • served as an expert / mentor for Latvian open geospatial data hackathon for pupils 2021 organized by the National Centre for Education Republic of Latvia – the team I have mentored, won!
  • served as an expert for the “Idea Laboratory 2021” in scope of the Emerging Technologies and Innovations Days of University of Latvia here the same, the team I have mentored, won!
  • supervised 15 thesis, successfully defended by my students. For two of them conference papers have been developed and already published, thus doing my best to find new talents and engage them in the scientific community;
  • delivered lectureOpen data: ecosystem, use-case, potential advantages and open questions to participants of the School of Excellence (in collaboration with the youth Foundation “Vertical” (“Vertikāle”)) in addition to invited lectures I mentioned above;
  • served as an advisor for the Faculty of Social Sciences/Institute for Social and Political Studies;
  • delivered a talk during the 14th conference of Latvian Association of Open Technologies “How to Stay Open in the New Era” entitled “Timeliness of open pandemic related data in national open data portals: a long way from the data publisher to the data user
  • participated in the 79th International Conference of the University of Latvia and presented two talks – (1) “User-centered analysis of the usability of Open Government Data (OGD) portals“ and (2) DQMBT or data quality model-based testing of information systems.

This is just a short list of the activities conducted and the achievements achieved, for which I would like to thank both 2021 and all those who have supported me. Thank you 2021 and bye! Welcome 2022!

International conference on the Intelligent Data Science (IDSTA2021): one conference – a ton of impressions

This November I had another great experience – participation in one of my favorite conferences – International conference on the Intelligent Data Science (IDSTA2021) collocated with Blockchain Computing and Applications (BCCA). Unfortunately, due to the pandemics we were not able to meet each other in person in Tartu, Estonia – a local organizer of this edition. But the organization was still perfect from their side. I was super delighted to serve a publicity chair for this conference for the second time (I mean IDSTA2020 and IDSTA2021).

Source: IDSTA2021

In short – 2 days (November 15-16), 50+ talks delivered by very skilled, experienced and knowledgeable researchers ready to establish and develop discussions around their topics during 13 sessions, 4 incredible keynotes delivered by Tarik Taleb, Omer Rana, Helen (Eleni) Karatza, Srijith Rajamohan, Ph.D.. Very lively discussions, insightful presentations and great environment!

Apart of serving as a publicity chair, I act as a reviewer, so I am a part of Program Committee, the session chair (for 2 sessions) and the (co-)author and presenter of two papers. One conference – 5 roles 😀 And what is even cooler is that my efforts have been also noticed by organisers and listed in Message from the General Chairs – it is always pleasant to notice you have been mentioned as a person, who contributed and whose contribution and efforts have been really highly evaluated.

Very briefly on my talks :

  • ShoBeVODSDT: Shodan and Binary Edge based vulnerable open data sources detection tool or what Internet of Things Search Engines know about you” (authored by Artjoms Daskevics and Anastasija Nikiforova) devoted to the study, which proposes a tool for non-intrusive testing of open data sources for detecting their vulnerabilities, called ShoBeVODSDT. It supports the identification of vulnerabilities at early security assessment stages and does not require the implementation of active and possibly disruptive techniques. ShoBeVODSDT uses two IoTSE (Internet of Things Search Engines) – Shodan and Binary Edge – by extending their features with the advanced capabilities built in it. It allows inspecting 8 predefined data sources, representing both rational databases, NoSQL databases and data stores – MySQL, PostgreSQL, MongoDB, Redis, Elasticsearch, CouchDB, Cassandra and Memcached – on their vulnerabilities and their extent. Our observation shows that security features built into the database allow to protect against unauthorized access, but there are databases with low security features, where it is possible to connect to nearly all IP addresses by retrieving information from them. Even more, in some cases the databases, which do not use security mechanisms, have been already compromised.
  • Stakeholder-centred Identification of Data Quality Issues: Knowledge that Can Save Your Business” (authored by Anastasija Nikiforova and Natalija Kozmina), in scope of which (1) we perform a literature analysis to compile a list of the most commonly occurring data quality issues, (2) considering the diversity and quantity of different data quality requirements and/or dimensions, we reduce the list of defects after running a brainstorming session followed by DELPHI analysis involving 12 experts, (3) the resulting list of defects is validated by 30 users with advanced data quality knowledge by means of applying the data quality analysis to real-world data that are freely accessible to all stakeholders (specifically, a pool of 30 open data sets). This leads us to the list of key data quality issues, which may be of advantage to the data holder and the data user giving both a higher level of confidence that the data are error-free and can be used without causing financial losses for business. These requirements, however, are expected to be used as input of the specification for the web-based data quality analysis tool to be developed.

Great event, great people, great emotions and impressions! Thank you, IDSTA2021 and your supportive and super-friendly team!

October – the month of Guest Lectures

This autumn, and more precisely in October, there were a lot of public activities, including delivering my talk at the ICEGOV2021 (14th International Conference on Theory and Practice of Electronic Governance (ICEGOV2021) “Smart Digital Governance for Global Sustainability“: “Towards enrichment of the open government data: a stakeholder-centered determination of high-value data sets for Latvia“ – this year I was able to take part in it in an online mode but hope this will change at some point), my Invited Talk delivered at the Nanotech2021, my participation in the Latvian Open Geospatial Data hackathon as a mentor – my team won, by the way 🙂 and my participation in the Europe Biobank Week 2021.

Yet another experience was related to a very new experience – the guest lectures. In the past, I had a few minor experiences, but these were mostly short talks that cannot be considered as normal lectures or lectures delivered only to Latvian students. It’s changed this autumn!

This autumn has changed this! I was very pleased and honoured to serve twice as a Guest Lecturer this October. One lecture for the University of South-Eastern Norway (USN) on the open data – its ecosystem, barriers, current and future trends in both worldwide and Norway context (see slides here), focusing on data quality, which the audience found to be especially interesting. I was extremely pleased to have such a lively discussion on the variety of points that we were able to cover during this lecture, because students have shown both an interest in my talk and what is more – their knowledge and ability to think and elaborate on the given points even without prior knowledge in this area. A very educated and intelligent audience!

The second lecture, however, was delivered at my neighboring Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Latvia (Latvijas Universitāte), on the potential of open data, reflecting the Latvian case and pointing out some examples that we can take over from other countries (see slides here). This lecture will also stay in my memory as one with a very fruitful discussion – hopefully this conclusion will be the same for the audience!

To sum up, thank you, for those professors who have invited me to serve as a Guest Lecture – Salah Uddin Ahmed and Visvaldis Valtenbergs. Hope that this was a great experience for us both!

My first Invited Talk

Recently, I was invited to deliver my talk on the openness (open data and open science) in the context of Society 5.0 during the International Conference and Expo on Nanotechnology and Nanomaterials. It was very pleasant to receive an invitation to deliver the invited talk on my recently published article Smarter Open Government Data for Society 5.0: Are Your Open Data Smart Enough? (Sensors 2021, 21(15), 5204), which I have entitled as “Open Data as a driver of Society 5.0: how you and your scientific outputs can contribute to the development of the Super Smart Society and transformation into Smart Living?. The paper has been briefly discussed in my previous post, thus, just a few words on this talk and overall experience. Although I have participated in different conferences as a speaker delivering presentations on my ongoing studies, this was my first experience of serving as an Invited Speaker, which is a sort of “Welcome to the senior league!”.

So, what was the main idea of the talk? Today, the open data and portals that provide these data and which can be accessed and used by everyone for their own needs became a daily phenomena. These phenomena became popular in science, contributing to the development of the concept of the “open science”, according to which making findings of the research available to the audience by means of articles, preferably OA, is not enough. Therefore, some more advanced guidelines have been defined and involved (or are involved, as is the case for (bio)medicine). These topic became valuable for both scientific and societal areas at (inter)national level. However, these initiatives, as well as users’ intent for open data, are evolving continuously and today, in line with IoT and smart city trends, real-time and sensor-generated data are of greater interest to users. This is all the more relevant for research-related data. These data may lead to solving problems that were not central research objects to the original data holders, improve previous results, establish cooperation to tackle challenges together. In addition, these data are considered to be one of the crucial drivers of a sustainable economy and can have an impact on information and communication technology innovation and become a creativity bridge in developing a new ecosystem in Industry 4.0 and Society 5.0. Although there are some studies reporting on open data and open science, understanding how and whether they have a positive impact on our lives at various levels and drives real transformation of the society, science, governments etc., this topic requires extensive work. Thus, in this talk I have provided my recent findings on this topic with some evidences of the importance of an “open science” trend, following the principles of open data. The aim of the talk is to make everyone ask themselves “am I promoting open science?” and “how can I promote open science?”.

To sum up, this was the first Invited Talk I have delivered and this was a great experience at the larger stage…. and… what to say, I liked it! It was a pleasure to get a very positive feedback on the talk and to see an interest from the researchers representing very medicine-related domains. Thank you, the International Conference and Expo on Nanotechnology and Nanomaterials.