A central aim for the Executive is the delivery of better and more cost-effective public services. Scotland's public services must combine best value and a strong focus on meeting the needs of our service users - the people of Scotland.
Place is an important issue in the efficient delivery of public services, helping service providers to identify needs, decide on policy priorities, target the effective delivery of policy initiatives and local and national services, and evaluate their effectiveness. That is why I see the effective use of geographic information as a powerful tool in support of our policy objectives.
Scotland is a small country, where strong partnerships and shared approaches not only make good sense, but are achievable. We need to develop common approaches, common standards and the capacity to share as much as possible of the resulting data and information, to ensure a joined up response to peoples' needs.
I welcome this strategy, and the intention to develop it further. I have been encouraged by the support expressed during the consultation on the draft of the strategy, and I am grateful to the stakeholders who have contributed to shaping this final version. I see the strategy as one important part of making best possible use of the resources we have, and of supporting the process of securing efficient delivery of modern public services in Scotland.
Tom McCabe, MSP
Minister for Finance and Public Service Reform