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Digital technologies contribute to rural governance

wuzhenwic.org Updated: 2021-12-21

Digital technology in increasingly rich application scenarios has been improving rural governance.

The General Office of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs and the Comprehensive Department of the National Rural Revitalization Administration have issued a third notice describing typical cases of national rural governance.

Many places have developed a new path of rural governance empowered by digital technology.

Improving administrative service efficiency

People in Jinshi, Changde in Central China's Hunan province no longer need to go through complicated administrative procedures to report that they are missing some materials thanks to the launch of a new mode by which government staff handle the matter on a conditional basis so that supply of the missing materials would not impact the next approval procedures. People only need to send a report of what's needed to the service hall by e-mail and then they can obtain the approved materials.

Chen Ming, associate researcher at the Institute of Political Science of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said that the mode realizes data sharing between various government departments and eases administrative procedures. It is a result of digital technology in social governance.

Hu Bingchuan, a researcher at the Institute of Rural Development of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said that overall administrative efficiency in digital rural construction has dramatically improved.

He added that digital rural construction has been rapidly promoted in villages with a relatively higher overall economic level and internet penetration rate with the governments' guidance and villagers' positive response.


Digital and information technologies make rural administrative procedures much easier and more convenient for villagers. [Photo/IC]

Inspiring participation in hometown construction

By using digital technology, immigrant workers are able to attend village meetings and contribute to hometown construction through a livestreaming platform.

Notices of a village meeting had to be sent door to door in the past to call villagers to attend the meeting. They took a long time to deliver and it was impossible for immigrant workers living in urban areas to attend.

The situation has been improved in Shimen county in Changde since a livestreaming platform was launched in the village, through which villagers are able to participate in the meeting wherever they are and giving suggestions for their hometown's development.

Digital technologies also help build a green channel for suggestions between villagers and the government.

For example, a rural governance platform was launched in Luquan district of Shijiazhuang, North China's Hebei province, through which villagers can comment on and make suggestions regarding regulations and policies. The suggestions are directly sent to the township and village level leaders.

The internet also enables villagers to learn about affairs related to pensions and home base processing. Its open transparency effectively lowers the public cost of rural social interaction.

Villagers' participation in rural governance and development also helps improve government's decision-making. Chen explained that the data aggregation ability of governments at all levels has been significantly enhanced through construction of digital villages.

He added that the government is able to perceive real situations of grassroots development and governance by data analysis, which benefits rural governance from an overall perspective.

Improving rural governance efficiency

Enterprises in all fields are contributing to digital rural governance.

The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs has signed strategic cooperation agreements with China Telecom and China Tower, promoting usage of digital platforms in rural governance.

Zhang Tianzuo, director of the ministry's department of rural cooperative economy, said that digitalization of rural governance is a systematic project.

He urged accelerating digital rural governance and promoting relevant pilot projects. He also suggested continuing to cultivate and explore typical experiences of digital rural governance by increasing cooperation with enterprises.

He stressed that China should make full use of digitalization to modernize its rural governance system and capacity.

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