Tuesday, September 13, 2011
BPN 1581 Dutch Senators on IPad
The members of the Dutch Senate have gone electronic from Tuesday September 13, 2011. From this day the members will receive all dossiers electronically on their iPad. It is a further step in their document flow. From 1994 the proceedings were published on internet already and since 1997 the Senate has its own website. The introduction of the iPad project will cost 150.000 euro and will pay itself back in saving retyping, paper and courier costs in one year.
The electronic switch to iPads of Dutch Senate is unique for parliamentary sections in Europe. Many parliaments are digitising their document flow and putting documents on the web. But now all the memebers of the the Dutch Senate received an iPad for the reception of documents, for support during the meetings. It is expected that the device will even have an effect on the way Senators debate.
It is interesting to see the Dutch senate adopt the new device. The Dutch senate has an grey and dusty image. Their average age is high, they meet one day a week. But now they are ahead of other parliamentary sections in Europe and even of the Dutch Second Chamber. As the Dutch Senate is smaller than the Second Chamber resp. 75 members versus 150 members it is easier to switch.