The Electronic Journal of e-Government publishes perspectives on topics relevant to the study, implementation and management of e-Government

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Journal Article

A Multi‑Level Framework for ICT‑Enabled Governance: Assessing the Non‑Technical Dimensions of 'Government Openness'  pp152-165

Misuraca Gianluca, Alfano, Giuseppe, Viscusi, Gianluigi

© Dec 2011 Volume 9 Issue 2, ECEG, Editor: Frank Bannister, pp93 - 222

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Abstract

This paper proposes an interpretative framework which aims to provide a systemic perspective and an instrument to elicit the links between Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) and governance, outlining the various challenges that this poses . In particular, it discusses the multiple dimensions of governance and identifies the public value drivers underpinning the conceptual and measurement framework proposed. In doing so the paper focuses on the 'openness' of governance mechanisms through it s interoperability dimension. It considers state‑of‑the‑art contributions at both academic and practitioner level and it also looks at how the proposed framework can be applied to the evaluation of two case studies at cross‑border, and national‑city level in Europe. Interoperability in fact is predominantly seen as an instrument for enabling cross‑border collaboration between public administrations within and between different Member States. Many initiatives and projects have been promoted and carried out during the last decade resulting in a growing number of potentially reusable best practices and benchmarks. Nevertheless, the complexity and volume of resulting project outcomes represent a challenge for effective exploitation of the results in other ini tiatives and intervention contexts. Moreover, despite the recognition of interoperability as a multi‑faceted concept (i.e. technological, organizational, and semantic), it seems to be mainly the technological aspects of interoperability that emerge from the available project results. The paper concludes outlining indications for future research and in particular on interoperability as a key driver for ICT‑enabled governance. Interoperability is found to play a strategic role in the delivery of e‑Governm ent services to local and national communities within the EU. Moreover, its significance is expected to increase over the next few years, especially in terms of how it supports emerging city governance models and acts as the backbone of communications at a pan‑European, national and local level.

 

Keywords: interoperability, eGovernance, information systems, Europe, policy, value

 

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Journal Article

Determinants of eGovernment Maturity in the Transition Economies of Central and Eastern Europe  pp166-182

Princely Ifinedo, Mohini Singh

© Dec 2011 Volume 9 Issue 2, ECEG, Editor: Frank Bannister, pp93 - 222

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Abstract

Our research focuses on the possible determinants of eGovernment (E‑gov) maturity in the Transition Economies of Central and Eastern Europe (TEECE). E‑gov maturity, in this research, refers to the growth levels in a country’s online services and its citizens’ online participation in governance. Our study of the extant literature indicated that few have discussed the determinants of E‑gov maturity in TEECE. Studies from differing parts of the world are needed for theory development. Building on a prior framework, we used the contingency theory and the resource‑based view perspective to guide our discourse. In particular, we examined the relationships between macro‑environmental factors such as national wealth, technological infrastructure, rule of law, and so forth on E‑gov maturity. A 5‑year panel data of 16 TECEE selected from two main groupings was used for analysis in conjunction with structural equation modeling technique; the data consisted of 80 observations or data points. The data analysis underscored the relevance of such factors as technological infrastructure, rule of law, and human capital development as possible determinants of E‑gov maturity in TEECE. National wealth was found to be an enabler in the research conceptualization. The implications of our study’s findings for research and policy making are discussed.

 

Keywords: Transition Economies of Central and Eastern Europe, TECEE, eGovernment, E-gov, eGov maturity, contingency theory, resource-based view, structural equation modeling

 

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Journal Article

Scenarios of e‑Government in 2010 and implications for strategy design  pp1-10

Georg Aichholzer

© Jun 2004 Volume 2 Issue 1, Editor: Frank Bannister, pp1 - 74

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Abstract

This contribution focuses on e‑Government as a comprehensive change programme and develops alternative scenarios with a view towards 2010. Empirical evidence of substantial risks to a successful implementation and operation of e‑Government calls for a forward‑looking approach and possible ways of correcting a wide‑spread neglect of long‑term innovation risks. The paper explores the scenario method as an established instrument for improving strategic decisions in a context of change, uncertainty and complex environments. Its application in a Europe‑wide research project leads to three macro‑scenarios with divergent implications for e‑Government prospects. The conclusions suggest particular requirements for developing more robust e‑Government strategies and encourage a wider use of scenario processes.

 

Keywords: e-Government, risk, future, scenario method, strategy, Europe

 

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Journal Article

e‑Government and State Reform: Policy Dilemmas for Europe  pp167-174

Manuel Baptista

© Feb 2006 Volume 3 Issue 4, Editor: Frank Bannister, pp157 - 240

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Abstract

e‑Government policies are both a sub‑set and a driver of government and public sector reform, and their implementation raises or amplifies a number of political issues in a wide number of areas. Particularly, the implementation of the current transnational e‑Government agenda raises important political issues, including the further privatisation of the public sphere and the changing role of government. Moreover, conflicting policy elements within the agenda magnify the need for more public debate on the desired outcomes of e‑Government.

 

Keywords: e-Government, governance, state reform, public sector reform, European Union

 

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Journal Article

EU Legitimacy and new Forms of Citizen Engagement  pp45-54

Andrew Power

© Mar 2010 Volume 8 Issue 1, Editor: Frank Bannister, pp1 - 82

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Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to review the arguments and examine the case for the legitimacy of the European Union (EU) and its institutions. In terms of the scope of the paper the author sought to, examine the literature in this area, engage with current issues, and speak with practitioners. This paper was written in the months leading up to the 2009 elections to the European Parliament. A number of interviews were done including two Irish members of the European Parliament (MEPs) who were standing for re‑election at the time. This was done to ground some of the ideas brought forward by the literature in the experience of those most directly involved. The paper goes on to look at some of the approaches to democratising the EU such as the way in which the EU has used information and communication technologies (ICT) to connect with the citizens of Europe. The author concludes that, while the EU does not conform to ideal models of legitimacy and accountability, it is evolving in that direction and a case can be made that the EU is at least as accountable as the nation states of which it is composed. It is also the view of the author that developments in social networking and virtual environments, offer states and politicians the opportunity to better engage with citizens and contribute to the speed of this evolution.

 

Keywords: e-government, e-consultation, European Union, democratic deficit, legitimacy, cyberparliament

 

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Journal Article

Design Principles of Identity Management Architecture Development for Cross‑Border eGovernment Services  pp188-201

Kamelia Stefanova, Dorina Kabakchieva, Roumen Nikolov

© Dec 2010 Volume 8 Issue 2, ECEG Conference Issue, Editor: Frank Bannister, pp83 - 235

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Abstract

Identity Management is a very important research challenge within the framework of the EU eGovernment development. This paper presents the main aspects of research, analysis and design of the Open Identity Management Architecture for European eGovernment development (GUIDE), a project financed by the 6FP of the EC. An innovative interdisciplinary approach is used, aimed at covering the whole range of technical, process, policy, legal and social Identity Management issues, and seeking to overcome the existing fragmentation of Identity Management initiatives. The primary purpose of GUIDE is to develop a consistent approach to identity management across the EU that will enable Member States to agree on the identity of an entity (a citizen or a business) in order to enable sectoral applications to conduct cross‑border transactions. The paper provides some important comments concerning the European aspects of Identity Management and presents the adopted Federation Identity Management model. The development of the Open Identity Management Architecture is driven by eight key political and functional axioms, regarding how these federations (Member State governments and commercial organisations) should be inter‑linked and what criteria each constituent federation will need to satisfy in order to join the identity grid. The architecting approach is based on an enterprise model adopted as a framework for the EU eGovernment development since the research revealed that frameworks for eGovernment are in an early state of evolution. The architecture is developed as a Service Oriented Architecture (SOA), implemented through the Web Services model, thus satisfying the requirements for ‘loosely‑coupled’ systems, independence of implementation and location, etc. The conceptual data model describes the key data entities that have to be supported for cross‑border identity services ‑ the citizen and the organisation. The logical service model presents the different types of identity management services that are relevant for the developed Open Identity Management Architecture. The interoperability issues, including the interoperability services and the Identity management interoperability infrastructure, are also considered.

 

Keywords: Identity management, European eGovernment, cross-border services

 

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Journal Article

Pan‑European Services in Slovenia  pp122-131

Jaro Berce, Vasja Vehovar, Ana Slavec, Mirko Vintar

© Dec 2011 Volume 9 Issue 2, ECEG, Editor: Frank Bannister, pp93 - 222

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Abstract

In 2009 we conducted a study on pan‑European electronic services. The main focus was on eGovernment and eHealth. First, qualitative interviews were performed to determine key areas of priority and essential problems in this area; for a small country suc

 

Keywords: Pan-European services, eGovernment, eHealth

 

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Journal Issue

Volume 8 Issue 1 / Mar 2010  pp1‑82

Editor: Frank Bannister

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Editorial

e‑Government is, like many a term in technology before it, suffering from verbal inflation. Actually that is something of an overstatement, terminological proliferation would be a better way of putting it. Now we have e‑governance, t‑government, i‑government, etc. It seems that picking a new letter and sticking it in front of ‘government’ is becoming quite the fashion.

However e‑government is still alive and well and in this issue we have a rich variety of articles covering different aspects of the topic. Joseph Bwayala is (I think) the journal’s first author from Botswana. In his paper he uses the Technology Acceptance Model as a starting point for looking at ways of reducing the risk of failure of e‑government projects in southern Africa and specifically how an adoption model has been used in Zambia and Botswana to foster e‑inclusion. This is a tale of two countries with Botswana having a developed e‑government strategy whilst Zambia is still at a much more basic level with its services. The model he proposes is a complex one and it is interesting to compare it with other models of e‑government acceptance. Of particular interest is the inclusion of local culture in the mix.

Another African country, Uganda, is the locus of Edgar Asiimwe and Nena Lim’s article in which they address another important theme in e‑government research, namely website usability. As they point out, only limited research has yet been done in this area in Africa. As the authors point out, Uganda currently does not score highly on e‑readiness criteria, but there is a steady growth in web usage. Looking at a range of major ministry web sites in the country, the authors consider various aspects of design layout, navigation and legal policies. They use a coding scheme to construct a simple, but effective model for rating each ministry. This is a model which might prove useful to other researchers, especially those in Africa.

There are two papers from Malaysia in this issue, both looking at different problems. Erlane K Ghani and Jamaliah Said look at the use by local authorities in Malaysia of the Web to disclose financial information. The Malaysian government has set itself the target of making Malaysia a fully developed country by 2020. eGovernment is one of a number of pillars in their approach to this. One of their findings is that a factor affecting how local authorities use the Web to disclose financial information is their sense of social obligation. Performance is another factor. Size, it would appear, does not matter. Their research suggests opportunities for others to replicate in different environments and compare what they find with the Malaysian results.

Also in Malaysia, Anna Che Azmi and Ng Lee Bee investigate the factors which affect adoption of e‑filing for taxation. Their approach is based in what has become almost a tradition for acceptance models as their review of the literature shows. They show that for Malaysian taxpayers at least, perceived ease of use, perceived usefulness and perceived risk all influence the intention to use and usage of the e‑filing system. These findings are in line with those found in other countries and are a useful addition to the growing body of knowledge about user take‑up of on‑line taxation services.

In a different part of the globe, Hyun Jung Yun and Cynthia Opheim analyse the diffusion of e‑government take‑up by the populations of different States of the Union in America. West has shown that there are quite dramatic differences in state e‑government rankings in the USA with the top states achieving double the scores of the weakest. A wide variety of explanations for these discrepancies have been proposed from topography to economic resources. Yun and Opheim suggest that a more useful explanatory factor is emulation and examine four explanatory hypotheses about diffusion: emulation, imitation, citizen demand and accumulation of time. They conclude that leadership is influential and that states will be motivated to copy innovations which they perceive will lead to greater efficiency and cost savings. This gives a greater impetus to reforms.

In terms of the typical EJEG paper, Andrew Power’s article is not in the mainstream, but it is the type of article of which I would like to see more and I invite readers to take up similar themes. Power’s article is about the positioning of ICT in the question of the democratic legitimacy of the European Union. Reflecting on a wide range of ideas, he examines how the EU uses ICT in general and in particular used ICT in the European Parliament elections of 2009. He also examines how our politicians see the role of ICT in democracy at European level. The article provides a rich vein of material for thought, discussion and further research. If any reader would like to pen a response or reflection on it, I would be pleased to consider it.

Finally in this issue, Tony Susanto and Robert Goodwin explore the use of short messaging service (SMS) technology by government. Despite the enormous popularity of this technology, the authors point out that there has as yet been no significant study of its use as an e‑ (or more accurately m‑) government tool. Using a multinational telephone survey which threw up some intriguing findings including that perceived efficiency in time and distant was the second most influential factor in take‑up after perceived ease of use, the authors observe that this suggests that citizens are cost conscious about such services. Another interesting finding (which may have wider implications) is that people like SMS because they perceive that they are dealing with people; they do not like talking to machines. There are other findings in their work, too many to summarise here, but this article also provides a trove of further research possibilities.

 

Keywords: acceptance factors, adoption model, Botswana, cyberparliament, democratic deficit, digital reporting, eConsultation, e-democracy, e-filing, e-Government, emulation, e-service European Union, feature inspection method, internet technology, leadership, legitimacy, local authorities, Malaysia, perceived risk, policies, professional networks, public services, SADC, Six Level model of SMS-based e-government, SMS, taxation, technology acceptance model, technology adoption, Uganda, users’ behaviour, web usability, websites, Zambia

 

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