Malta Digitali Logo


Malta Diġitali aims to pave a digital transformation journey that will set out the right conditions to positively affect Maltese society and the economy.

Explore More


The concept of digital holds
various meanings, depending
on the context or application in
which it is used. For individuals,
digital can mean their base of
daily work and source of income;
an essential means to maintain
family connection and social
inclusivity; an opportunity for
a brighter future for oneself or
others; a key tool to facilitate
daily life and entertainment; a
vulnerability; a native world; or
even a totally unfamiliar one.
Similarly, digital can take various
forms across businesses of
different sizes and purposes. It can
be regarded as a contributor to

facilitating business operations;
an opportunity for business
diversification or growth; an
enhancer of business resilience; or
even a threat if not used properly.
This diverse set of digital
expectations, concerns,
motivations and relationships
across facets of daily life has
led Malta Diġitali to adopt a
persona-driven approach to
digital. As indicated in Fig. 5, the
Strategy aims to project a vision
of digital transformation through
the lens of various societal,
business and government
personas. The personas provide

an encompassing view of different
digital needs, therefore aligning
stakeholders with key criteria
relevant to each segment. The
actions stem from the root needs,
pain points and challenges
experienced (or expected to be
experienced) by these personas.
The development of these
personas was based on input
gathered via a wide-ranging
research exercise that included
desk research and stakeholder
discussions. Collectively, these
personas direct the attainment of
Malta Diġitali’s vision and goals.

Figure 5 Image

Societal Personas

Student Persona

The student persona is
characterised primarily
as digital by default,
having grown up in an
environment where
devices are the natural
choice for most daily
activities, including
entertainment and
learning. Yet, one
cannot simply assume
such a stereotype
without paying
close attention to
other challenges or
shortcomings that exist
in daily life.

Limitations relating to the
availability of and access to
digital tools and resources
may arise, both at home and
at school – and the reasons
might not simply be financial in
nature. For example, there may
be a lack of understanding of the
benefits of using technology at
home. Educators may also lack
the training and support to fully
integrate technology into learning.
However, difficulties experienced
by students in their pace of
learning, as well as engagement
with conventional teaching
practices, may provide a solid
basis for increased digital
learning and assessment. Indeed,
in addition to action taken by
various non-digital actors12 that
can influence a learner’s level
of engagement and success,
the use of digital tools may help
tackle the critical issue of early
school leaving.
Ultimately, a student increasingly
needs to be prepared to form part
of an evolving workforce reality
shaped by digital proliferation
across all forms of work activities.
Such development calls for

increased demand in digital
knowledge and specialisation13,
as well as possession of creativity,
and communication and
teamwork skills. Additionally, the
ability for a student to make
informed choices along their
learning path will become even
more crucial, particularly due to
the increasingly significant growth
in demand for ICT specialists.
Hence, students must not be
digitally excluded in any way so
that they are placed in a better
position to communicate, interact
and, ultimately, engage in future
work across various sectors.
However, such consideration
does not simply involve digital
availability factors. It also calls for
actions that address students’
digital wellbeing and safety, so
that they are protected from
potential challenges such as
digital addiction, digitally induced
anxieties, and exposure to – or
even participation in – forms of
online abuse.

Young Adult Persona

Further digitalisation calls for the
workforce, especially the younger
generation, to possess digital
competencies that safeguard
and widen their job prospects.
Locally, digital specialists are
increasingly in demand. Upskilling
and reskilling, enabled by formal
recognition rewards, are becoming
increasingly necessary for all jobs
that are likely to be impacted by
digitalisation and the dynamic
changes it triggers. Apart from
skills, further consideration needs to
be given to the concept of work-life
balance, especially in the context
of increased online interaction that
may blur the line between one’s
personal and professional lives.
Such developments, which could
be supplemented further by
digital investment from overseas,
could potentially position Malta
as a nation of outstanding digital
talent, which would guarantee a
stronger workplace for the younger
generation and those to come.
Apart from the younger
generation’s economic
contribution, consideration
also needs to be given to the
services and information they
are expected to both render and
benefit from, along with all other
beneficiaries. Further promotion

of Government’s online services
and more comprehensive online
service provision within the private
sector are required. Moreover,
ease of accessibility and an
ongoing focus on user-centricity
need to be ensured in the process.

Hyper-connected Individual Persona

The hyper-connected individual
expects to interact socially
and conduct business from
anywhere and at any time. This
reality can only be attained via
digital means and also needs
to be complemented by the
appropriate infrastructure, tools
(including electronic signatures
and authentication, as well as
Maltese language support),
regulatory and legal frameworks,
policy updates, incentives, and the
availability of and access to data
that is necessary for members of
a digital society to contribute and
for a digital economy to operate
efficiently and effectively.

Elderly Persona

The elderly persona is likely to have
a higher dependency on health
care, social security and other
services that enable independent
living despite the user’s physical

limitations. Knowledge and digital
means to facilitate the provision
of such required services would
be highly impactful. Yet, attention
must be paid to the paradigm
shift that the elderly face when
transitioning from in-person
service provision – both public
and private, such as banks – to
interactions that are fully online.
Thus, trust and confidence
amongst the elderly when
adopting and using online service
provision needs to be engendered.
Further efforts must be made to
ensure that online services and
tools are secure and, above all,
designed with the elderly in mind,
while still allowing for alternative
routes for those who genuinely
cannot go digital.
Indeed, another factor to consider
is the extent to which the elderly
can afford digital means.
Affordability issues could lead
to digital exclusion and, worst
of all, loneliness, which tends to
be prevalent among the elderly.
Given their potential vulnerability,
the elderly need to feel safe within
their community. Therefore, related
digital measures should also
enable them to easily connect
to their loved ones, feel safe and
protected, and even allow them
to actively participate in society
beyond their physical constraints.

Vulnerable Persona

On a more general note, the
vulnerable persona experiences
similar challenges and digital
requirements to the elderly. A
vulnerable person often needs
special care, support and
protection due to bigger risk of
digital exclusion in view of the
difficulties and challenges they
face. Hence, their requirements
include knowledge about
appropriate services such as
those related to social security
and personal protection, among
others. They also experience digital
service accessibility challenges
that arise from such issues as
low literacy levels, poverty, visual
impairment and others.
Shortcomings in hard and soft
skills, especially those that result
from digital transformation and
which are likely to increase in the
future, may also potentially render
segments of the workforce as
vulnerable members of society.
Hence, such challenges must
be addressed, possibly through
digital re-skilling, upskilling,
certifications and other measures,
as appropriate.

Digital Exile and Digital Orphan Persona

Digital exiles and digital orphans
experience digital shortcomings
that can potentially be traced to
early childhood and which could
also render them as vulnerable
members of society. A digital
orphan has significant access
to digital but lacks the proper
guidance needed on its use.
On the contrary, a digital exile
is granted very limited digital
access, mainly due to sceptical
views or attitudes at home. In both
cases, their interpersonal and
social skills, especially related to
the use of digital, may likely be
impaired in the long term.
Therefore, further assessment
is needed to find ways to tackle
the issues experienced by
digital exiles and digital orphans
accordingly. Further awareness
and education campaigns
on online security and safety,
which include schools and more
specifically homes, may primarily
help to mitigate such scenarios.
Increased measures may also
be needed to address the longterm
repercussions such people
face and to ensure their digital
inclusivity, both on a social and
professional level.

Tourist Persona

Nowadays, tourists use digital
channels, tools and platforms
to select their destination and
to plan and ensure their travel
experience will be memorable.
Hence, there is the need to
ensure digital investments that
promote Malta as a key tourist
destination. Investments, such
as incentives for hotels, other
hospitality establishments
and tourism related operators,
may need to be made to meet
increasing consumer demand for
a sustainable travel experience
accessed via digital means.
Above all, through digitalisation,
tourists may get to enjoy travel
experiences tailored to their
specific needs, tastes and
requirements. This also includes
related investments pertaining
to journey planning and booking,
language, connectivity, and
facilities that make travel easier at
the airport and on ferry crossings
and public transportation.
Moreover, newly emerging niche
digital tourism segments, such
as Esports competitions, may
also serve as opportunities to tap
into related investments in the
local market.

Business Personas

Sole Traders and Micro-enterprises Persona

The demand for eCommerce and
delivery services has increased
considerably, especially following
the global COVID-19 pandemic.
While this may serve as an
opportunity for many businesses,
one cannot discount the various
limitations predominantly faced
by small businesses – both micro
as well as larger SMEs.
Financial constraints are often
one key drawback. Electronic
payment costs can be expensive
and such businesses may lack
the volume of custom that would
allow them to offer discounts.
Resource pooling may drive better
and lower cost integration into
the digital value chain. Access to
funding schemes may also help,
provided businesses are aware
of them and that schemes are
quickly and easily accessible. In
fact, the costs associated with
accessing funding schemes
often discourage their uptake.
Furthermore, the lack of resources
that can act as guarantees
often hinders young enterprises
and sole traders from availing
themselves of external credit
funding opportunities.

Coupled with financial constraints
are human-related ones too.
For example, in addition to
international deliveries that are
costly relative to the European
mainland, Malta’s import and
export activities are often complex
and require extensive paperwork.
Many micro-enterprises also
often lack basic digital skills and
knowledge on what digital can
do for their business. Therefore,
upskilling initiatives must ensure
sufficient awareness while
remaining cognizant of the
resource and time constraints
that such firms face.
Data is another key resource
required to enable market growth.
Yet, micro-enterprises often
experience greater challenges
than larger companies when
it comes to tapping into large
repositories of data.

SMEs and Large Enterprises Persona

Even though the challenges
faced by sole traders and
micro-enterprises, particularly
financial and human resource
ones, may not be as acute within

larger SMEs, they cannot be
ignored as they are still likely to
pose significant shortcomings.
To this end and by using digital
technologies, regulated business
and compliance activities can
be strengthened and be made
less resource-intensive. However,
enterprises also often lack funding
and expertise to take forward
large-scale digital transformation
activities. Current funding
schemes lean towards aiding
capital projects, new employment,
and research and development
(R&D) but may not be sufficient
to fund digital transformation. In
this context, further developments
in digital Government-tobusiness
services may help ease
administrative burdens often
faced by businesses. In addition,
although recognised by law,
digital signatures and electronic
contracts are still not widely used,
possibly because of the lack of a
unified national system to sign,
authenticate and accept them.
The further promotion of remoteworking
and family-friendly
policies across different jobs
can also potentially contribute
to a growth in Malta’s labour
market participation rates, which
are generally and inherently
small. Within the digital supply
environment, larger enterprises
may have the capacity to expand

and/or diversify into digital
markets, but the limited availability
of digital talent is a major
inhibitor. Indeed, the shortage
of specialised digital skills is a
significant barrier to business
growth, tech diversification and,
ultimately, national economic
development. Thus, the availability
of digital skills, along with other
required capabilities, serves to
facilitate the development of
new digital products and services
that in turn could enhance
national competitiveness.

Foreign Investors Persona

Foreign investors need to be made
aware of Malta as an ideal location
for digital business activities, and
several other ancillary measures
must also be taken care of.
Primarily, investors should be able
to establish and operate their
business as efficiently as possible,
including being able to open bank
accounts easily.
Further digital infrastructure
investments along with holistic
and comprehensive online
facilities are critical for improved
accessibility, availability and
comprehensiveness of the
services required by an investor
to be able to easily set up their
business locally. Through such

online facilities, the availability
and promotion of fiscal, regulatory
and policy requirements and
incentives are key supporting
and necessary elements. Critical
processes, such as due diligence,
must also be covered as part of
the overall digital transformation.
Additionally, the availability and
access to open data sets would
facilitate easier entry to the local
market and thus act as a business
support incentive in its own right.
Finally, the adequate availability of
digital talent and the presence of
a holistic R&D ecosystem are two
critical factors that could attract
and sustain foreign investment.
However, both need to be boosted
further on the local level, possibly
by attracting local investments
by foreign academic institutions
and businesses specialising in
digital technologies. In addition,
positioning Malta as an ideal
testbed location for techstartups
and digital technology
development would further
consolidate Malta’s R&D and skills
base within the digital domain.

Government Personas

Mapping Tomorrow: A Strategic
Plan for the Digital Transformation
of the Public Administration
2019-202114 was launched in 2019
and built upon the concepts of
client-centricity, one Government,
sharing and reuse of data,
end-to-end digital services,
digital-by-default, and business
process re-engineering (BPR). It
also spurred the use of emerging
technologies, such as artificial
intelligence (AI), Internet of Things
(IoT) and distributed ledger
technologies (DLTs).
The recently launched Achieving
a Service of Excellence: A 5-Year
Strategy for the Public Service15
targets service of excellence
based on quality, accountability
and sustainability to meet and
even exceed clients’ needs.
Fostering institutional knowledge,
using appropriate technology,
and investing in the people behind
service provision are among the
most essential components for
achieving this vision. Hence, in line
with the Public Service Strategy,
the focus is on the continued
transformation of public service
delivery into a seamless process
for Government’s clients, both
internal and external.

Intra-Government Client Persona

Instilling a quality-based mentality
focused on providing a service of

excellence is a challenge. Here,
digitalisation could drive more
informed decision-making about
services through tools that provide
continuous monitoring and
measurement in real time. This
would further ensure the quality
of public services and resultant
customer satisfaction.
Apart from quality performance
measurement, digitalisation could
also contribute to further effective
management and increased
mobility of public administration
employees. A more highly skilled
workforce, upon which sustainable
structures can be built, can be
facilitated by a transformation
of the people management role
into a more proactive and datadriven
one, as well as by further
investment in employee training.
In addition, enabling employees
to work remotely and providing
the necessary tools may open
opportunities for Government
to extend operating hours
while respecting employees’
work-life balance.

External Government Client Persona

Ensuring client-centricity,
particularly in terms of
accessibility, is an ongoing
challenge for any service provider,
including Government. Within
the context of digitalisation, the

service design stage is
crucial in ensuring that key
parameters are given due
consideration, especially in
view of managed feedback
Another key challenge within
Government is its diverse
portfolio of public service
provisioning to individuals
and organisations, which
in most cases involves
various governmental
entities. The further provision
of omnichannel services,
including the consolidation
of feedback channels, would
help address such issues.
Furthermore, sectors face the
challenge of upholding the
Once-Only Principle (OOP),
whereby individuals and
organisations provide diverse
data only once in contact
with public administration,
while public administrative
bodies then take action to
share and reuse this data
internally, even across
borders, respecting data
protection regulations and
other policies in the process
as applicable.

Malta Diġitali


Download the full version of our strategy as a PDF by scanning this QR code