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Hong Kong Government Commissions Unisys to Revamp Youth Site

Photo: Paul Hill

The Hong Kong government’s efficiency unit has commissioned Unisys to help revamp its online Youth Portal in hopes to strengthen engagement with Hong Kong’s young people. Unisys will use public social networks and new mobile computing capabilities to provide a multimedia platform for young people to access integrated government services and information, as well as contribute their own creations.

The Youth Portal is an initiative of the efficiency unit and public broadcaster Radio Television Hong Kong. Aimed at 15- to 24-year-olds, the portal receives approximately 65,000 visitors each month.

“Unlike a conventional government website that pushes information out to its citizens, the Youth Portal has evolved into a multimedia platform with integrated content from approximately 190 organizations as well as content created by the local youth themselves including 3,100 exhibits, 675 videos and 140 blogger articles,” said Patricia Lau, deputy head of efficiency unit for the Hong Kong government. “We have also used YouTube, RSS, podcasts, iPhone/Android applications and existing public social networks such as Twitter and Facebook to engage with the youth.”

“We want to be more efficient in leveraging these tools to engage young people and enable co-creation, but are constrained by the current technical infrastructure and architecture,” she added.

According to Unisys, the company is under the six-month consulting engagement and is conducting a technical and functional study for the future development of the portal to fully leverage web 2.0 technology. A key objective is to further encourage two-way dialogue with
Hong Kong’s young people using the types of technologies that they like to use, including social networks and applications for mobile devices, in the most efficient and cost-effective manner.

Reuben Khoo, managing partner of Unisys Asia, believes the company’s involvement in this project illustrates how new social computing technologies have altered the way people and organizations communicate.

“More and more businesses and organizations are exploring the use of social computing to better engage with their customers,” Khoo said. “Hong Kong government’s efficiency unit is seeking to fully leverage the publicly available social networks that young people are accustomed to in order to improve engagement as well as the way services are delivered and information is shared.”

Khoo also announced Unisys will incorporate the use of location-based services into the site’s capabilities that will allow users to sign up to have information about relevant events sent to them when they are in close proximity.

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