Historic efforts to address identity have not been holistic, but have instead targeted specific "snapshot" registration programs, such as voter or birth registration. But without a mechanism for formal or informal coordination among these programs, the result has been a patchwork of systems ill-suited to ongoing and lifelong engagement with with individual beneficiaries, particularly in countries that have developed national population registers separate from the civil registration systems. This lack of coordination has resulted in low coverage rates, loss of record continuity, and sub-optimal investments.
"Business as usual" will not be sufficient to improve coverage rates and create broad adoption of holistic identity management systems. Rather, multi-sectoral coordination will be required to bridge fragmented programs and ensure digital identity standards that are applicable globally and from birth to death.