Nine government tech stories that made 2020

The ongoing health crisis poked holes in states' outdated systems, brought new political attention to technology issues and solidified the central role of the chief information officer.

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Government IT leaders have known for years that the mainframes, data centers and tangled web of applications they oversee were in dire need of increased attention and funding. Now, nine months into a pandemic, everyone knows it.

The public turned to government in record numbers this year for unemployment assistance, health care and guidance on how to navigate the health crisis. And often, government came up short. Years of neglect and technical debt were exposed, and lawmakers and senior government officials who’d been slow to grasp the importance of technology have been forced to reckon with its role as the backbone of a growing number of services.