FROM THE EDITOR
Washington Technology is expanding its coverage of the fast-growing state and local infotech market, offering readers a regular section on developments around the nation.
The state and local section, which begins on page 48, will contain stories previously seen in the New Markets section and elsewhere. Some features that formerly ran in the New Markets section, such as Internet 201, now appear under the Tech Business banner.
There are varying estimates for the growing state and local information technology market - ranging from $35 billion to $46 billion - but the growth curve is clearly upward.
Total infotech industry spending in state and local governments was $34.5 billion in 1996, growing at 5.5 percent, according to G2 Research Inc. The state and local systems integration market accounted for $7.45 billion of the total picture and grew by a whopping 16 percent, says G2.
Federal Sources is even more optimistic, predicting annual growth of 10 percent from current spending of $46 billion.
A pair of stories on the front page by WT Staff Writer Dennis McCafferty showcase a slew of emerging business opportunities in the state and local market. The state of Connecticut just issued a request for proposal to outsource all of its state agency infotech - and many states are expected to follow in its footsteps.
Since the request for proposal was announced, Connecticut officials have received calls from counterparts in 10 other states. Meanwhile, Georgia, Michigan and Texas are overhauling entire database systems involving welfare, Medicaid, transportation and justice, outsourcing integration work.
Check out our new state and local section for a snapshot of how states are gaining infotech buying clout on the General Services Administration schedule. And read our profile of McLean, Va.-based BDM's state and local market strategy. The systems integrator, which acquired two firms in January to bolster its state and local business arm, plans to augment that base with additional purchases later this year.
For WT, the story opportunities in the state and local sector are endless. For our industry readers, the market opportunities are vast. For our government readers, the technology-assisted productivity improvements are promising. We look forward to providing greater coverage of this exciting market.
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