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

Internet Voting, Turnout and Deliberation: A Study  pp71-86

Michel Chevallier

© Jan 2009 Volume 7 Issue 1, Editor: Frank Bannister, pp1 - 122

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Abstract

Analysis of the profile and motives of internet voting users in Geneva (Switzerland) shows that the common explanations of political participation ignore a subjective — or affective — dimension of political participation. This emotional dimension is the driver of internet vote use. Coincidentally, iVoting is mostly used by citizens who describe themselves as irregular voters or abstainers. This points to invisible barriers to political participation, as these citizens do not lack resources or knowledge, but the desire to participate by the common paper‑based channels. For them, political participation is a self‑centered process. Ultimately, this reflects a deep shift in the political life, from class‑based choices to individual choices in the realm of public affairs. The present‑day common good is defined by an aggregation of individual wills.

 

Keywords: Internet voting, Switzerland, turnout, eDemocracy, public participation, disenfranchisement

 

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Journal Article

Examining the Barriers to e‑Government Adoption  pp113-122

Richard W. Schwester

© Jan 2009 Volume 7 Issue 1, Editor: Frank Bannister, pp1 - 122

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Abstract

e‑Government initially began as process where government entities developed websites and began populating these sites with information. After mastering this information dissemination aspect, government units moved toward processing online transactions. Subsequent to mastering transaction processing, governments moved across a continuum and engaged citizens online in a participatory framework; that is, offering Internet applications that connect citizens with public administrators, decision‑makers, and perhaps elected officials. While the subsequent progression and potential benefits of e‑Government applications are without limits, there are a number of barriers that impede the implementation of such applications. Using survey data collected by the International CityCounty Management Association (ICMA), this paper examines the factors that most impede the adoption of e‑Government applications. Central research questions include: what are the differences between municipalities that have comprehensive e‑ Government platforms and those that do not, and to what extent do certain barriers explain these differences? Multiple regression results indicate that e‑Government adoption is a function of financial, technical, and human resources. Holding all other factors constant, municipalities with higher operating budgets, more full‑time IT staff, and technical resources are more likely to implement a comprehensive e‑Government platform. Political support is a key and fairly robust determinant of municipal e‑Government adoption as well.

 

Keywords: e-Government adoption, municipalities, barriers, service delivery, information dissemination, citizen participation

 

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Journal Article

Towards a Semantic Interoperability in an e‑Government Application  pp209-226

Fathia Bettahar, Claude Moulin, Jean-Paul Barthes

© Jan 2009 Volume 7 Issue 3, Editor: Frank Bannister, pp209 - 294

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Abstract

Research issues have emerged from the rapid introduction of new technologies in government services in order to deliver efficient and cost effective services, information and knowledge through information and communication technologies. However, the complexity of government services and the diversity of actors involved in the processes make the access to the right information difficult and pose several problems. Some problems are linked to the way of presenting and accessing information. Other problems are linked to interoperability among applications and processes of eGovernment services. The objective of the European TerreGov project is to find a solution to such problems. The project focuses on the semantic requirements of governments at local, intermediate and regional levels, needed to build flexible and interoperable tools to support the change towards eGovernment services. We propose, within this project, an ontology to present knowledge and to achieve the required level of semantic interoperability. We use the ontology to describe the domain knowledge of the organization and to index the resources from which civil servants may receive information. The key point of the system is a unique and multimodal ontology used simultaneously for describing domain knowledge, for adding semantics to agency services, for indexing various documents in knowledge bases used by civil servants and finally for supporting the interaction between the users and the system. We present in this paper the challenges of using ontology in eGovernment environments, such as the lack of expressivity of the formalism chosen for interoperability in the project and the risk of inconsistency when the ontology changes. We propose our solution to such challenges and we demonstrate the use of the ontology by the module in charge of managing complex tasks in the system.

 

Keywords: ontology, e-government, ontology formalism, semantic interoperability

 

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Journal Article

A new Usage for Semantic Technologies for eGovernment: Checking Official Documents Consistency  pp120-133

Fred Freitas, Zacharias Candeias Jr, Heiner Stuckenschmidt

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

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Abstract

Semantic technologies, and particularly the ones related to the Semantic Web and its ontologies, have proven useful for many government related applications and prototypes, such as service configuration, automatic service connection among many others. This is possible because the Semantic Web is based on ontologies, which, in practical words, stands for a detailed conceptualization of a domain and its concepts, relations, constraints and axioms, defined in an unambiguous manner using formal logic. On the other hand, official documents, and particularly legal ones like law codes, often contain semantic deficiencies that are not realized by their authors. The most common among them are ambiguities, inconsistencies and under specifications. These deficiencies are certainly a source of systems’ and databases’ integration problems and confusion during their usage, when the definitions’ intended meanings can differ depending upon the stakeholder. During the ontology development of a domain as simple as vehicles, we have witnessed such phenomena. The necessity of defining the different vehicle types in detail for classification and checking purposes shed light on some of these deficiencies present in two Brazilian legal codes. In this work, we present the building process of the ontology, the resulting ontology and show how these deficiencies were evidenced during its construction. This fact actually opens up new possibilities in the usage of semantic technologies, as guides to check whether official documents are ontologically and logically correct, by not containing ambiguities, under specification or inconsistencies.

 

Keywords: ontology-based analysis of texts, semantic deficiencies, vehicles, eGovernment, law, ontology engineering, law consistency, official documents consistency

 

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Journal Article

Measuring for Knowledge: A Data‑Driven Research Approach for eGovernment  pp226-235

Pieter Verdegem, Jeroen Stragier, Gino Verleye

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

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Abstract

As ICT provide a lot of possibilities, high expectancies exist towards the electronic public service provision. All governments are increasingly establishing their e‑strategies. However, eGovernment still faces many challenges as it continues to develop. The current status of electronic services delivery opens up a lot of questions, both for practitioners and researchers. Therefore, further progress of eGovernment needs a profound knowledge base. eGovernment policy has focused several years on bringing online public services and on benchmarking their availability and sophistication. Simultaneously, eGovernment measurement and monitoring activities are often based on the so‑called supply‑side benchmarking. Although this is important knowledge, it is under criticism because it lacks a user‑centric viewpoint of eGovernment development. This article presents and discusses a bottom‑up and data‑driven approach about how research can help to manage (user‑centric) eGovernment strategies. Based on statistical testing (techniques of structural equation modeling, SEM) of large‑scale sample data from the Belgian government, the authors have investigated which relations do exist between contextual variables and the availability and/or satisfaction of electronic public services. By doing this, this manuscript presents an illustration of a data‑driven approach in eGovernment monitoring and it explains how this can support and enrich the management and evaluation of eGovernment policy.

 

Keywords: eGovernment, methodology, management, benchmarking, evaluation, satisfaction, structural equation modeling, SEM

 

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Journal Article

Virtual Acts of Balance!: Virtual Technologies of Knowledge‑Management as co‑Produced by Social Intentions and Technical Limitations  pp183-197

Anders Koed Madsen

© Dec 2013 Volume 11 Issue 1, Editor: Frank Bannister, pp181 - 322

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Abstract

Abstract: This paper presents an analysis of official documents and white papers pertaining to two web‑portals (The Policy Grid Project and FEED) that are launched in the United Kingdom (UK) and the European Union (EU) respectively. The aim of the p ortals is to filter and synthesize information relevant for policy discussions and thereby improve ´knowledge‑democracy´ in different ways. The paper denotes such portals ´virtual technologies of knowledge management´ and it presents documental data as a window to analyze and discuss the infrastructural choices of such portals. The analysis is grounded in theories related to Social Construction of Technology and it shows how the framing of the portals and the concrete digital choices taken in relation t o the infrastructure are influenced by the intentions of relevant social groups as well as by the technical limitations on computers abilities to process semantic data. It is especially emphasized how technical web‑ontologies implicitly carry with them d eeper philosophical ontologies about phenomena such as ´politics´, ´scientific intentionality´ and ´freedom´. The compromise between these technical limitations and the social intentions is described as a ´virtual act of balance´. The paper accordingly co ncludes that a co‑production of technical infrastructures and social values takes place in the process of designing these types of portals. It illustrates the necessity of formalizing part of the policy‑making process if semantic machines are to play a si gnificant role in policy‑making. Computer‑based information‑processing makes software increasingly powerful and it is argued that the ´e‑governance community´ has to be reflective about this development and constantly consider the trade‑offs between struc tured semantics and looser types of classification of policy issues.

 

Keywords: Keywords: e-governance, knowledge-democracy, socio-semantic web, social construction of technology, discourse analysis

 

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Journal Issue

Volume 7 Issue 1 / Jan 2009  pp1‑122

Editor: Frank Bannister

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Keywords: accessibility, barriers, BRAIN, business process, business rule, capacity for getting ahead, citizen participation, community building, coping and sense making strategies, developing nations, digital divide, disability, disenfranchisement, eDemocracy, e-governance, e-Government adoption, e-government readiness, Egypt, end-user approaches, e-readiness, information and communication technology, information dissemination, internet voting, IT transfer, KedaiKom, Malaysia, municipalities, policy participation, political participation, public participation, public sector, public servants, Section 508, service delivery, social and digital inclusion, social consequences, social participation, strategic planning, Switzerland, technology acceptance model, Telecentres, turnout, websites

 

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