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Short description / Current status and future steps / Lessons learned:
= Case description =
The Department of Lands and Surveys of Cyprus "DLS" is probably the most important pillar of socio-economic development in Cyprus, as it deals with Immovable Property, which is one of the leading factors for progress, prosperity and development in the Cypriot economy. With its present operational structure and responsibilities, through a wide range of Laws and Regulations, the Department is one of the most essential services of the Public Sector, providing the basis for the design of all development programs relating to Immovable Property and making a most important contribution to all the sectors of activity of the Cypriot society. The Department is considered to be one of the oldest departments of the Public Sector of Cyprus, initiating its operations in the year 1858.
The Department (an umbrella organization – all aspects of property under one roof) through its multidimensional role is solely responsible for the provision of services in connection with all the rights relating to Immovable Property - registration, valuation, general assessment (for tax purposes), tenure, land consolidation, surveying, cartography, geodesy and hydrography, as well as the management of all property belonging to the State. The Department’s core business, being a major leader in IT innovation the last 20 years, is supported by the Cyprus Integrated Land Information System (CILIS).
Undoubtedly, DLS is the main source of data relating to Immovable Property. The data in conjunction with the procedures generating and supporting them are the main and core asset of the Department, providing value added and a strategic advantage. Their further use and utilization becomes an imperative need, as these data in order to be productive, should first of all be structured correctly and at the same time, through interoperable means and technology, be available primarily horizontally, across the Public Sector, to other bodies, businesses, researchers and ultimately the citizen himself. DLS unique ability to hold / integrate and manage fully reliable and interoperable Registry / Legal, Fiscal and Cadastre / GIS data, positions it as one of a kind globally. The Department collects a plethora of data related to real property manuscripts of over 100 years old and computerized data of more than 35 years old. Data collection is part of its daily operations, as well as part of broader data collection projects, both in the field, and through new technological forms.
DLS has set as a primary objective, the implementation of a new IT Strategy, the "DLS IT Strategy", which has been prepared for upgrading the IT in the Department and already being implemented. A medium-term outcome of this Strategy is the implementation of the new Internet e-Services platform of the Department, the "DLS PORTAL" (https://portal.dls.moi.gov.cy). The New Internet Services platform (has been recently awarded with the 2018 Cyprus Innovation Award by the President of the Republic of Cyprus) is a landmark in the modern history of DLS, as following intensive efforts lasting many years, DLS fully opens its doors to the outside world, with Open Data and Online Services via the Internet, through its own platform of electronic services; the whole concept is based on a 24 hour available, fast and friendly service.
A new IT customer-centric culture has been embedded in DLS’s vision, focusing on the citizen via the availability of e-Services. The provision of effective services to citizens and the two-way communication with them is the top priority for DLS. This is achieved through the necessary redesign and reengineering of processes, the establishment of the latest ISO standards (CYS EN ISO 9001:2015) throughout the Organization, the investment in people as a value-added factor, the enhancement of access and services through a friendlier infrastructure and finally, the implementation of state-of-the-art IT technology; the latter is further enhanced and supported by one of the largest IT scale projects of the Cyprus government already taking place – the new Cyprus Integrated Land Information System consisting of the upgrade of a) the DLS Geographical Information System and b) the upgrade and extension of the DLS Legal and Fiscal IT System.