Reporting On Site(ROS)
Ministry Of Public Administration And Security

The Problem

Along with the growth of Information Technology including the introduction of internet in the 1990s, Korea quickly built up “E-government” websites and achieved an advanced e-administration with the full use of Information Technology.
In the 21st century, the foundation of the E-government system has nearly reached a completion and enabled the citizens to actively participate in the administration through increased online interaction between the government and the citizens along with growing opportunities for citizen participation. As an outcome, the citizens were able to easily utilize the services provided by the government, and also started to demand for desired administrative services.
Consequently, local governments created windows to receive opinions and complaints of citizens on their websites. However, citizens needed to go through many inconvenient processes such as finding out the responsible departments for their request and visit each website to create different accounts. Furthermore, since the citizens had to report an opinion or complaint by writing, the situation was often unclear, and it led to government officers contacting the petitioner repeatedly.
Stepping into the era of “Smart Administration” by integrating administration services and new information technology including spatial data and artificial intelligence, in line with the technical growth of mobile devices such as smart phones, the Ministry of Public Administration and Security (MOPAS) has developed a convenient new real-time civil complaint and policy proposal filing service for civil petitioners that is not restricted by space and time.

Solution and Key Benefits

 What is the initiative about? (the solution)
'Reporting On Site(smartphone app for reporting complaint)' service enables civil petitioners conveniently make a report by simply taking photos or videos of the sites causing daily inconvenience, such as damaged roads or malfunctioning traffic lights. The reported information is automatically delivered to the officer in charge for him/her to respond to the civil complaints by identifying the location and situation according to information initially given by petitioners via this service.

Civil Petitioners: Convenience Enhancement via participation through mobile devices.

Thanks to the integration of cutting edge Information technology and government services, citizens are able to communicate with government agencies more conveniently anytime and anywhere. Petitioners can file complaints without specific contact information of responsible authorities or officers. Through the “Location Based Service” (LBS), all complaint reports are sorted and sent to officers in charge and results are again delivered to petitioners via the smart phone application and SMS. These processes have led to the increase of two-way communication.
Since the development of 'Reporting On Site' service, approximately 100,000 service applications have been downloaded over the past 9 months and during the same period, 60,000 cases of complaints and policy proposals have been received through smart phones, and resolved successfully. Moreover, taking into account other complaints received through websites and telephones to government agencies, the total number of complaints received has reached 375,000 cases, showing 24% increase compared to last year when this new mobile service was not introduced. Furthermore, this new service has received positive media coverage from a number of reputable media agencies.

Public Officers: Quick and accurate problem solving based on location and visual information.

Public officers, who have received citizens’ requests through the new service, can make more prompt and accurate decisions based on the location and visual information submitted by the citizens. This system has led into simplified administrative procedures and reduced workload for officers in charge since the number of their telephone communications with petitioners to discuss details of the problem and to visit the sites became greatly reduced. Prior to introducing the smart phone application service, the average time spent on handling a single civil petition was 5.1 days. However it was reduced to 3.7 days after the service implementation. Moreover, 3.5 billion KRW is expected to be saved for annual administrative costs due to the reduction of time used on identifying the situations and site visits.
This service not only prevents the redundancy of administrative tasks in advance as citizens are able to check the results of other civil petitions, but also provides citizens with more credibility on the government’s service delivery, at the same time giving officers more sense of responsibility while they are responding to citizens’ petitions.

Local Communities: Enhanceme znt of local communities through continued improvement and participation

Requests for increased safety in local communities are growing in addition to simple civil petitions such as illegal parking and damaged roads. Typical examples are: government’s crackdown on harmful businesses near schools or installation of CCTVs on dangerous sites by citizens’ requests. As an exemplary practice, in May 2012, just few days before the Yeosu EXPO 2012 in Korea, countless Yeosu citizens reported damaged tourist facilities and incorrect road signs. In response to these reports, public officers rearranged those inconveniences and enabled the successful hosting of EXPO. Active participation of citizens can enhance the value of collaboration between people and government, creating great synergy effects.

Actors and Stakeholders

 Who proposed the solution, who implemented it and who were the stakeholders?
The service of 'Reporting On Site' is the outcome of collaboration between central government agencies including MOPAS and local government entities.

Planned by Ministry of Public Administration and Security in cooperation with relevant government ministries

One of the main tasks of MOPAS is building up pleasant environment for citizens through strong cooperation between the central and local governments as well as achieving the world best “Smart Government.” Therefore, MOPAS planned and secured the budget for all in one service by using smart phone service in order to resolve inconvenient communication windows which had been operated by each local government. Furthermore, MOPAS is now operating an education program for public officers of both central and local government agencies, along with active marketing for the public use of this service.
In order to improve the core contents, each central government agency including the Ministry of Environment, the Ministry of Land, Transport and Maritime Affairs, and Korean National Police Agency are giving their efforts for service enhancement by collecting various opinions in order to actively identify areas for the application of the 'Reporting On Site' among their tasks, as well as to draw out improvement ideas during the “National Strategy Conference”.
The requests filed through the smart phone app service are automatically sorted to be handled accordingly by relevant ministries and public agencies, and the Ministry of Public Administration and Security strives to provide appropriate solutions to requests, by continuous enacting and revising the relevant services and guidelines.

Operated by local governments, managed by metropolitan councils

More than 90% of requests from citizens via 'Reporting On Site' are cases requiring handling by lower-level local governments. Thus, local governments, which are direct contact points of citizens, take the role of directing petitioners’ complaints to the relevant officers for them to process the requests promptly and report the results back to petitioners. Metropolitan councils which control and manage the lower-level local governments, prevent delay of the responding process through closely monitoring the procedure.

(a) Strategies

 Describe how and when the initiative was implemented by answering these questions
 a.      What were the strategies used to implement the initiative? In no more than 500 words, provide a summary of the main objectives and strategies of the initiative, how they were established and by whom.
Applying various technologies provided by smart phones.

'Reporting On Site' provides realistic and intellectual service by applying up-to-date technologies such as location based map inquiry, GPS, and digital camera. The petitioners can deliver their complaints accurately by attaching site photos and videos. Furthermore, even if petitioners do not have the perfect information on which authority to appeal, the related authorities can still receive petitions, as the app automatically recognizes the reported sites through GPS. Moreover, the officers in charge that receive wrongly delivered petitions can re-deliver them through the “Petition System” to appropriate agencies, then the petitioners receive notifications from those agencies. The catch phrase, Anytime, Anywhere, Easy and Convenient Interaction between Citizens and Public Officers, explains the aim of the service very well.

No-Charge Service and Simplification of usage

MOPAS is providing the service free of charge, which has been designed to be accessible by everyone. Citizens, who wish to use the service, can download it from the open markets for free. Even the elderly or children can use it with ease since the service only requires a few simple touches. The users only need to submit their names and telephone numbers without going through sign up process or entering identification number. The service also informs the first time users with “Examples” function for each petition case, making the service easy to use.

Sharing requests and results of others

The main function of this service is not limited to simply delivering requests of citizens to the government, but sharing others’ requests and results. When petitioners report their complaints, they can select whether or not to disclose them to the public. Details of requests and progress of disclosed cases can be checked by other citizens through simple keyword search.
Since results and satisfaction rate of response are open to the public, clean and fair treatment of petitions are possible.

(b) Implementation

 b.      What were the key development and implementation steps and the chronology? No more than 500 words
The essential stages of development and initiation can be divided into three stages;

Stage 1: Development Stage of web service and service application

As explained earlier, before the start of this project, local governments prepared windows to listen to opinions of citizens through their websites. However, citizens had to inconveniently search and visit the relevant website out of some 230 local government websites to appeal their requests.
Therefore, in 2010, as a pilot stage, the Ministry of Public Administration and Security built up a web site to enable single communication window, integrating the scattered windows of local government.
After that, rapid spread of smart phones enabled a new plan of integrating the web service to the smart phone service and transformed into a new smart phone service utilizing the most up-to-date IT technology.

Stage 2: Test operation stage of smart phone service

Ensuring the stability of the service and nationwide coverage preparation were main issues during the second stage. Through this pilot operation, problems were identified easily and ways for improvements were presented from the users’ and public officers’ perspectives on handling civil petitions.
In 2011, the service was test-operated in major regions including Gyeonggi Province, Busan, Daejeon and Jeju Self-Governing Province. The service process was simplified to asking for only name and telephone number to report a complaint, excluding lengthy sign up or verification process. In addition, user-friendly interface, as well as comfortable and bright colors for the design was applied through collecting user opinions.

Stage 3: Nationwide service coverage stage

During the third stage, MOPAS mainly focused on the nationwide expansion of the service and enhancement of service usage rate. In January 2012, the application was remodeled to be accessible anywhere in the Republic of Korea. Furthermore, various kinds of public awareness activities such as press release, social network service (SNS), and advertisement at public transportation including subway stations, were conducted for citizens to become aware of the service.
In order for the success of this system, gaining stability and enthusiasm of the public officers were necessary. To achieve this, related guidelines were distributed, and training and education for the new system were conducted for the public officers in charge of informatization and civil petitions. Moreover, on-line training materials were made available for smoother work transition and learning for people who are new to the service.
MOPAS endeavors to promote the service by continuously collecting responses from the users, and hopes to make the service satisfactory for every citizen in Korea.

(c) Overcoming Obstacles

 c.      What were the main obstacles encountered? How were they overcome? No more than 500 words
Awareness raised in citizen participation

Active participation of the citizens is an essential part for successful outcome of the service. During the pilot stage of the service, citizens were passive in actively appealing to resolve problems of their local communities. However, the number of service users increased thanks to the proactive public relations. Giving attention to the idea of smart phone service, Facebook, Twitter and blog accounts was created in order to actively market the service’s usefulness to the public and to post model cases of service usage on SNS. The effectiveness and purpose of the service had widely disseminated due to this strategy. This SNS public relations case was selected as an outstanding model case among other Korean Government Ministries and won an official commendation of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism.
In addition, for cases of reporting illegal actions such as littering cigarette butts where the reporter receives a part of the fine paid by the violator, knowing that this kind of reward motivates the citizens to make reports, MOPAS implemented to the local level to stimulate more usage of the service.

Overcoming work burden of public officers for handling civil petitions

Public officers in the front line showed passive attitudes toward the spread of the service, concerned about their potential burden of work caused from rapid increase of petitions due to the service’s characteristic of “easy request submission”.
Hereupon, MOPAS alleviated pressure and negative attitude of public officers by emphasizing the advantages of rapid processing as a result of location and visual information although the total figure of civil complaints submission could possibly increase, addressed during the “Meeting of Vice-Governors of Metropolitan and Provincial Governments,” and workshops for front line public officers
The satisfaction level of public officers has continued to increase since the implementation of 'Reporting On Site'. In November 2012, the service was awarded ‘Minister of MOPAS Prize’ as a “Good Practice of Administrative Improvement for Civil Affairs”.

(d) Use of Resources

 d.      What resources were used for the initiative and what were its key benefits? In no more than 500 words, specify what were the financial, technical and human resources’ costs associated with this initiative. Describe how resources were mobilized
In 2010, for the implementation of a single-window communication web system to integrate each local government entities, MOPAS spent $32,300 (35,500,000KRW) of the central government budget. Since then, approximately $244,500 (269,000,000KRW) has been spent for upgrading functions for smart phone service along with maintenance and nationwide coverage from year of 2010 to 2012.
Although budget has been spent on developing a smart phone application and to renew the “Petitions Processing System” which enables received civil petitions to be redirected to the appropriate local government entities, additional budget has not been required for the actual operation since the existing system of each local government for petition processing is still being utilized.
Moreover, no additional manpower was needed to sustain the service, because the current local government officers were educated to respond to the new tasks.

Sustainability and Transferability

  Is the initiative sustainable and transferable?
'Reporting On Site' service is not only a simple application, but it aims to promote building an information foundation to boost participation of citizens through the new mechanism. In order to achieve this, the Korean Government makes ceaseless effort toward institutionalizing the service such as reflecting related service contents in the petition guidelines and revising the ordinance of the service.
By reflecting environmental changes, the Ministry strives to enhance the quality of the service through continual upgrade of the service and constantly updating the service guidelines and manuals in the education materials, as well as monitoring the satisfaction rate of citizens and related public officers.
Although the smart phone app service had minor concerns regarding local infrastructures in the introductory period, because it has high utility and elasticity, it may be considered very useful for developing countries since the service could be used for gathering diverse opinions on areas such as environment, welfare, safety and etc.
The service of 'Reporting On Site' has proved its excellence and the prospect of nationwide expansion less than a year since its development. The service was selected as “Outstanding Case Model of Civil Affairs Administration Betterment” and was awarded ‘Minister of MOPAS Prize’. It was also chosen as “Excellent Public Application” and received a “National Information Society Agency Prize”. Moreover, it has achieved grand prizes in public service area from many application awards such as “KOREA MOBILE APP AWARD” and “SMART APP AWARD”, since the service has been widely recognized by the Korean internet users and professionals on its remarkable contribution toward service revolution and spread out of positive internet culture. In October 2010, the service drew attentions of the Ministers and Vice-Ministers, as well as the public officers from fifty nations through an exhibition and demonstration during the “e-Government Global Forum.”
The type of e-government service such as 'Reporting On Site' which encourages citizen participation is one of the most important agendas that countries worldwide are pursuing to implement a successful e-government system. Republic of Korea will share its experience of the service and know-how with other countries, to put itself up to be case studied and benchmarked. Especially, Korean Government is willing to provide development software programs as well as its institutional and technical operational know-how package for successful service settlement to countries that are in the introductory stage of building up e-government service. For example Korea provided aid to develop the “Nationwide One-Stop E-Service Implementation” of Ecuador on 2013.

Lessons Learned

 What are the impact of your initiative and the lessons learned?
Government’s role change regarding ways of solving public concerns

The service of 'Reporting On Site' contains great meaning on making role changes within government in response to changes in policy environment. Thanks to the smart phone app service, the Korea Government now plays an active role in building up interaction and network between the government and the public. Also, the service enables solving public issues and problems together by using diverse social assets, differing from the previous role of the government, which took sole responsibility of resolving social problems.
Moreover, before this service was introduced, tasks for public officers were concentrated on handling problems and complaints after they had occurred, because it was difficult for government organizations to identify the requests of local communities beforehand. However, with the creation of the new system for delivering the services demanded by citizens, it became possible for public officers to take appropriate measures in advance.

The Key Issue: Communication and Collaboration between citizens and government

Continuous increase of usage rate is the proof of success in communication and collaboration between government and citizens, as proposed by MOPAS. It is also believed that local communities can further grow through this service.
Through the 'Reporting On Site', the Ministry of Public Administration and Security has learned that in order to bring such successful results, the government alone cannot achieve fruitful outcomes in administrative services without the participation of citizens during the process, even if a convenient system has been realized for citizens. The government has a responsibility to provide quality services for citizens, as well as to encourage citizens’ active participation and put effort into continuously reflecting the voice of the citizens at the same time. In order to accomplish this, roles of the central government in cooperation with local governments and civil society are crucial. Cooperation and collaboration among relevant organizations are important.

Next steps for “Local communities built together with citizens, public officers and the government”.

Currently, MOPAS is extending its service range to enable the public officers themselves to check up and improve local environment through this system. In other words, this allows the public officers to determine dangerous or inconvenient points and take care of them in advance of receiving citizens’ complaints, and build up a positive and responsive administrative society.

Additionally, for smoother settlement and revitalization of 'Reporting On Site', MOPAS is planning to create reward programs for citizens and public officers who use this service. It is a program in which the citizens who report an issue receives ‘bonus points’ to be used as government service fees, and give public officers who successfully handle a case incentives in personal affairs.

MOPAS is expecting that if an atmosphere is created where citizens and the public officers concern together for the local environment through the expansion and administrative revisions of these kinds of services, it is expected that local communities will be transformed to become more interactive and responsive and the overall quality of life will be enhanced.
From what we experienced, rather than focusing on short term successes, it is more important to plan for long-term with gradual extension and to appeal for mutual cooperation of related entities. We hope that our experience will be of assistance to other countries.

Contact Information

Institution Name:   Ministry Of Public Administration And Security
Institution Type:   Government Department  
Contact Person:   Eun-Jeong SON
Title:   GIS Expert Adviser  
Telephone/ Fax:   82-2-2100-3562/82-2-2100-4218
Institution's / Project's Website:   www,
Address:   Central Government Complex #508 209 Sejong-Daero, Jongno-gu
Postal Code:   110-760
City:   Seoul

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