LOLA, the Linked Organization of Local Authority ICT Societies, was born out of need that local ICT organizations of different countries felt that by working collectively and collaboratively, common benefits could be achieved for their local organisations, their members and the citizens they serve. Or simply said, the Linked Organization of Local Authority ICT Societies attends the same objectives as each of the participating local ICT organizations but on a global level.
During an international congress in Charleston (USA) in 2006, the first plans rose to share knowledge and best practices within an international framework. Even more, why wouldn’t we look for a joint project?
LOLA counts now 7 hearts: MISA in Canada, ALGIM in New-Zealand, KOMMITS in Sweden, SOCITM in the United Kingdom, GMIS in the US, VIAG in The Netherlands and V-ICT-OR in Belgium are the founding member states. They all share with some pride that LOLA has been legally officialised on the 12th of February 2013.
Earlier, it was decided to go for a legal model according to the Belgian law and to establish the registered office of LOLA in Belgium as well. The Belgian legislation is so well-developed and has proven its reliability for non-profit organizations across borders.
Not only from a legal point of view LOLA has this special link with Belgium, even more, the Presidency is in Belgian hands: Eddy Van der Stock, President of V-ICT-OR in Belgium, has been elected as President of LOLA.
In particular, LOLA will be observing the way local authorities – by means of ‘interlocal’ collaborations - are addressing pain points together.
Future Plans for LOLA
'Initially, we would like to come out with this brand new organisation, ' says President Eddy Van der Stock. 'In autumn we would like to organize a conference where we focus on the needs of local authorities, in cooperation with the Citadel project leaders. The Citadel statement was adopted in the vision and mission of the new organization because it contains five basic themes which are being worked at in the different countries. These are: data and system interoperability, open standards, open data, broadband technology, shared services.'
We want to elaborate these problems during thematic workshops and congresses ' explains the President , ' but we also want to explore if we can solve for example in function of European standardization some of those elements by ways of projects for local governments. Of course this would be done in strong collaboration with the various federal states. We continuously need to keep in mind that the main objective is to create a simplified and more efficient government . From within the local governments themselves, we can already count on substantial support to reach this objective . '
On Friday 22 February 2013, LOLA NPO has been published in the “Belgisch Staatsblad” “The Belgian Official Journal”.
Press (Dutch): Datanews
More information: lola-ict.org