Mapping government platforms, design systems and standards

Richard Pope
Project on Digital Era Government
2 min readMay 15, 2019


Digital service units along the lines of the UK’s Government Digital Service and Italy’s Team per la Trasformazione Digitale, are springing up in government departments around the world and at all levels of government. With this has come an exchange of ideas, ways of working, people and, increasingly, code and standards.

Some of this is happening informally, through networks, as can be seen from looking at similarities between the digital service standards and playbooks of different countries, or following code being forked between agencies on GitHub. There are also organizations like FutureState, MOSIP and the Nordic Institute for Interoperability Solutions that have been set up with the explicit aim of sharing approaches and code around the world in a more systematic way. At the local level too, groups like Civic Analytics Network in the US and LocalGovDigital in the UK are building networks of practitioners and sharing information about the projects they are working on.

In an effort to better understand this, over the past few months, and as part of the platforms work at digitalHKS, we’ve started mapping projects and standards around the world. Specifically, we’ve been recording three types of things:

  1. Platforms, registers and APIs
  2. Design systems
  3. Service, API and coding standards/policies

The aim of doing this is two-fold. Hopefully it will become a useful resource for digital service units looking to understand approaches in other countries and to see what opportunities there are to copy and reuse. Secondly, we hope it could prove useful to other researchers studying the emergence of digital government around the world.

The data is licensed under a Creative Commons license and is published using the Open Data Institute’s Octopub tool.