At the NASCIO Midyear conference in Arlington, Va., last week, we talked to state chief information officers about whose job it is to be looking around the corner at emerging technologies that might have applications for government. After all, ever-present budget constraints — as well as the demands of managing traditional IT infrastructure — can leave little time to develop in-house expertise around the latest disruptor grabbing all the headlines.

Whether it's blockchain, the IoT or any other emerging technology, Delaware CIO James Collins says that anything that touches the network is something the central IT office needs to understand. 

To better prepare the state to deal with emerging technologies, Collins has formed a yet-to-be-named team of IT staff, loosely referred to as an "enterprise solutions group," that will work across state government. The group is currently building a vendor-agnostic path to commercial cloud so the state can offer that service to its agencies. But as Collins explains below, the state can't embark on such endeavors alone.