Public Services’ Cloud Migration: Best Practices and Guidelines for the involvement of Users and Stakeholders

In nowadays citizens expect low-cost, high-quality public services. Governments have to take an innovative approach, making sure that services are cost-effective and responsive to people’s needs, while also being flexible and secure. Cloud computing brings these attributes and introduces many benefits.

Surfing Towards the Opportunity of Real Migration to Cloud-based public Services (STORM CLOUDS) is a project partially funded by the European Commission within the 7th Framework Program in the context of the Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) project. The project has the objective to explore the shift to a cloud-based paradigm for deploying services that Public Authorities currently provide using more traditional Information Technology (IT) deployment models. In this context, the term “services” refers to applications, usually available through Internet, that citizens and/or public servants use for accomplishing some valuable task.

Thinking about public online services, the project aims to improve Public Administration Organisations and to facilitate the communication between citizens and Public Authorities. The main objective of the project is to define useful guidelines on how cities can implement the process of moving their public services to the Cloud.

These guidelines are based on direct experimentation in four European cities, creating a set of relevant use cases and best practices. Pilot cities participating in the project are gathering different services that are not deployed in a cloud-based environment. The four pilot cities through an open innovation process have selected the most suitable ones to be moved to the Cloud.

The report “Best Practises and Guidelines for the involvement of Users and Stakeholders” provide the elements for the pilot cities to carry out this process in the context of the STORM CLOUDS project. Cities started the process by wondering “who is my stakeholder?”, then “How shall I activate them?” and then they have to process all the inputs received.

Pilot cities that have already implemented this process are: Agueda (Portugal), Valladolid (Spain), Thessaloniki (Greece) and Miskolc (Hungary).

The purpose of this report is to create a set of useful guidelines for every city’s Public Authority and other stakeholders.  Following an approach based on the Open Innovation paradigm, cities are expected to gather the opinion of all stakeholders in the cloudification process: each city will be able to identify and mobilize the stakeholders depending on the service proposed to be activated in the Cloud.

The report is divided in the following chapters:

  • Chapter 1: Introduction
  • Chapter 2: The Open Innovation Methodology. The chapter introduces a summary regarding the Open Innovation, how this technology is applied to the STORM CLOUDS project.
  • Chapter 3: Guidelines for user’s organizations. The chapter proposes guides on how to get feedback from users regarding each step of the process.
  • Chapter 4: User involvement. The chapter focuses on the actions needed to achieve user awareness.


The Open Innovation process for STORM CLOUDS project 


The first objective of STORM CLOUDS is to implement a user-driven open innovation methodology intending to improve the proper operation of Public Authorities moving their services to a cloud-base system. This objective makes user-driven innovation the best option to develop a method based on stakeholder’s opinions and experiences: end-users decide which innovative internet-based services are interesting in and which are considered useful to be activated in the cloud.

STORM CLOUDS project is divided in two stages, the first one focuses in the development of a Cloud-Platform of available Public Services. The aim of this first step is to create a set of functions that allow the Public Authorities of the pilot cities to move basic services in the cloud. The second stage focuses in interoperability, reusability and scalability issues, in order to expand the project at European level. The aim of this stage is to transfer the services to others European cities following the portfolio developed in the first stage.


STORM CLOUDS Methodological approach for the 1st stage 

To achieve the user-driven Open Innovation methodology, two innovative cycles have been defined and applied in each stage: The First Cycle includes the selection of the services addressed to each Pilot City. Regarding a list of services proposed by the pilot cities, a reduce list has been selected based on the stakeholders feedback and comments. In this point the first guidelines has been defined for the implementation of the Cloud-Platform. During the Second Cycle, the selected services were activated in the Cloud. End-users evaluated and validated these services, completing the necessary functions for the final Cloud-Based Services Platform.


Download the Best Practises and Guidelines for the involvement of Users and Stakeholders