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Westminster needs to get a grip and learn some digital skills

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In the last year, the Queen convened her historic Privy Council by video, parliamentarians have voted online and the Cabinet has been meeting via Zoom. Even the hardened leaders of the country in Westminster and Whitehall have had to adapt to different ways of working because of Covid. This will be particularly useful as many politicians and civil servants are on their August holidays, working remotely away from the physical corridors of power.

Yet despite this seeming revolution in flexible working, underneath the sheen, there still lies a disturbing level of digital incompetence in the upper echelons of government and politics. This has only been highlighted by a number of high-profile episodes. Take for example, the NHS Test and Trace service, which cost an extraordinary £37bn of public money. Or last year’s exams fiasco whereby a computer algorithm downgraded the A Level and GCSE results of many pupils, especially at state schools.

Today our finances, healthcare and identities have all been digitised, technology companies wield........

© City A.M.

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