Joyce misleads on ICT

Yesterday Steven Joyce launched another glossy report into the ICT industry. The ICT Sector report highlights strengths of the industry and challenges such as finding enough skilled workers but the report fails to recommend any steps the Government could take and in fact misleads how Government is supporting this sector.

I think Steven Joyce is desperate for examples how he is supporting the sector so when he pointed to ‘increased investment in science and engineering places at our tertiary institutions’ I’m not sure if he was aware this investment was for courses like Mining and Geology not courses like Software Engineering, Information Technology and Computer Science. Under the increased tertiary institution places students can study astronomy, mining engineering or wine science but not computer science, where the report notes we need extra workers. Talk about ‘e-gilding the lily’

ICT is a fast-growing sector of our economy and one that could help deliver greater prosperity for Kiwis but the report entirely ignores the GCSB legislation, lack of a second Internet cable and Government procurement policies which, when I talk to the ICT sector say are some of the big challenges holding them back. Likewise the report fails entirely to acknowledge the role played by open source software in the ICT sector.

Late last year Russel and I released a paper proposing a second Internet cable, greater Government procurement and developing ICT apprenticeships and along with actually increasing places for students to study computer science and related fields these would make a real difference to the sector. More so than yet another self-congratulatory glossy report without any recommendations that Steven Joyce seems so fond of.

7 Comments Posted

  1. Interestingly enough Lincoln Uni is being let away with basically walking away from it’s IT degree.

    Given that Lincoln is primarily agricultural sciences university and pretty much every other tertiary institution in the country offers some form of ICT degree to at least undergrad level, I think their decision is eminently sensible.

  2. Interestingly enough Lincoln Uni is being let away with basically walking away from it’s IT degree. There is a crying need for grad’s and the only problem with IT at Lincoln was the lack of institutional buyin and a lack of marketing.

  3. Is there a single day that goes by without this government misleading us?


    … and yes, we have to make it clear that the TPP is not in the best interests of New Zealanders… besides all the other things that the public needs to be educated about.

  4. Exactly another self-congratulatory glossy report without solid evidence to support a good (or bad?) job done…
    Key govt (National MPs) have been so good at boasting their “achievements” during Parliament’s question time…about one week ago, the minister for environment boasted about how this govt spent more money on environment (tens of minnions more) than Labour govt ) initiatives…(while cutting hundreds of DOC front line workers jobs, wow imagine plus all those salary they save and move to be spent on some other more likely environment “damaging” initiatives/projects),

    i would like to hear where all those extra money spent on??? my guess will be on Consultancies who can wirte good reports with well directed agenda on how feasible and ok to damage/ruin our environment in big way, maybe some on big executive salaries, or more hush money? um very curious…

  5. Agreed dbuckley.

    The only one of those ‘roadblocks’ that might reasonably hold up innovation / investment in the ICT sector would be the restrictions imposed by whole of government procurement policies.

  6. If “the GCSB legislation, lack of a second Internet cable and Government procurement policies” are some of the big challenges holding us (the ICT sector) back, then you must have talked to some strange representatives of the ICT sector. Or they are part of a specific sub-sector of the sector to whom these are important.

    Sure, almost all of us (except some in the ICT sector) would have liked a second submarine cable, but thats a stretch from “holding us back”.

  7. It appears from your article that once again the main actor in this affair is of course the effect being created by the need of the US security services to affect the TPP regulations so that we are basically signed sealed and delivered before we know whats hit us -Why else is John Key still the PM certainly not for what is required in your article which reminds me of how little sovereignty we have to progress this nation and its democracy

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