Trying to be constructive rather than just criticizing the school admission forms

While being frustrated by the paper form filling mania that is school admissions in Lund Municipality, I remembered Max Tegmark’s promise to himself to not complain about something he hasn’t actively tried to solve, so I spent my hair shaving and shower time pondering the issue.

In one for we give permission to retrieve data from the healthcare provider, in the next we enter health data ourselves…

Essentially every year parents are requested to fill out paper forms containing pretty much the same data: name, personal number, address, phone numbers, email addresses for the school, the school nurse, after-school, mother-tongue education, etc. It’s ridiculous considering that every bit of that information is available to some municipal institution connected to my personal number. Rather than sharing information across these institutions, they will print and mail a blank form to fill out send back, so someone can type it all in… just like last year, and the year before.

This reminded me of some discussions and ideas at the recent “Conference: Blockchain & Smart Contracts” at Visma. There was a lot of focus on inner company sharing of financial data using a blockchain ledger for immutability and transparency, as well as solutions for sharing such data between companies doing business and the state, with each being able to see only what is required.

I would really love to see a similar solution for sharing of private information across municipal and public offices, connected to my BankID and mutable only by me. In essence belonging to me, yet available to any institution on demand. Addresses, contact details, marital status, workplace and income could all belong to this ledger of mine. Anyone who has ever moved, and certainly those who have changed name, would no doubt appreciate a solution that could make such processes seamless.

What really stands in the way is of course the mammoths of bureaucracy in these institutions. While we wait for these slow wheels to start turning, could we at least get these paper forms on-line and connected to our already existing electronic inboxes?