The ministers attending had emphasised the need for militaries to work closer in an effort to strengthen the region’s HADR capabilities. Evidently, speedy and accurate response is paramount in a disaster situation.
Arising from this, FutureGov, Asia Pacific’s leading government modernisation title, took the opportunity to meet one of the world’s foremost experts on this subject. Managing Editor James Smith, and Senior Journalist Kelly Ng spoke to Alphonzo Albright, Global Director Government, Industry Solutions and Market Development, Polycom in an interview via video connecting from Polycom’s Singapore office to Alphonzo in his home in New York City.
Alphonzo is formerly New York City’s CIO of the Office of IT and has had the experience of managing several major crises, such as the September 11 attacks, the Northeast blackout of 2003 and Hurricane Sandy. His discussion with FutureGov followed the Singapore ministers’ offer to discuss the challenges, pitfalls and where governments have had success in encouraging preparedness and improving response times with a fusion centre set up under proper governance.
Aptly put by Alphonzo when talking to FutureGov: “Governments cannot change an event, but what they can do, is mitigate and prepare for it”. Alphonzo went on further to elaborate how video communication tools expand the universe of experts that governments can tap on, from across multiple public sector agencies, as well as from the private sector.