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

Warm Experts in the age of Mandatory e‑Government: Interaction Among Danish Single Parents Regarding Online Application for Public Benefits  pp87-98

Christian Madsen, Pernille Kræmmergaard

© Jun 2016 Volume 14 Issue 1, Editor: Frank Bannister, pp1 - 134

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Abstract

Abstract: Citizens adoption of e‑government channels has been the focus of both academic studies and public policy for over a decade. Current efforts seek to reduce citizens interaction with caseworkers through traditional channels in favor of increased use of e‑government self‑service channels. To increase adoption rates and reduce the costs of public administration, the Danish e‑government strategy has made e‑government self‑service channels mandatory thereby attempting to turn citizens into their own caseworkers. The channel choice branch of e‑government studies how citizens and businesses choose interaction channels in a public service encounter. Until now, studies of citizens channel choice have taken place at the level of the individual and ignor ed the influence of group processes. Moreover, although the importance of digital literacy has been widely recognized in relation to citizen channel choice and e‑government adoption, citizens knowledge of public administration and administrative processe s has received less attention. To cover this gap, we conducted a qualitative study of how citizen‑to‑citizen interaction influences channel choice in public service encounters, and how citizens share advice for seeking public benefits. The study entailed five focus group discussions and nine follow‑up individual semi‑structured interviews with Danish single parents who receive public benefits. We employ domestication theory and the concept of the warm expert to inform our analysis. Our findings show tha t the interaction and advice sharing among citizens extends beyond the choice of channels and also covers how the selected channels are used and evaluated. In addition to helping each other with how to use e‑government self‑service channels, citizens also share practices for negotiating with public authorities. This negotiation requires the use of traditional channels and concerns areas such as increasing the likelihood of being granted benefits and ways of getting around the mandatory requirement for e‑g overnment self‑service channels. Based on our findings we present contributions to the channel choice field and offer suggestions for how to expand and update a previous channel choice process model.

 

Keywords: Keywords: channel choice, citizen-to-citizen interaction, domestication theory, e-government, multichannel, public benefits, single parents, warm experts

 

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Journal Article

Translating Telephone Calls To Spreadsheets: Generating Knowledge on Citizen Multichannel Behavior in Collaboration With Caseworkers  pp106-118

Christian Østergaard Madsen

© Oct 2018 Volume 16 Issue 2, Editor: Dr Carl Erik Moe, pp87 - 146

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Abstract

Public organizations increasingly seek to digitalize their services, and migrate citizens from traditional communication channels towards digital self‑service channels. In Denmark, digital communication and self‑service channels are mandatory for public organizations, citizens and businesses. Denmark has the highest share of citizens who use digital channels to interact with public authorities in the EU. However, the use of traditional channels remains high, and occurs among adopters and non‑adopters of digital channels alike. Within the multichannel management stream of e‑government research, there is a methodological gap in how knowledge can be generated on citizen multichannel behavior, and why citizens continue to use traditional channels. Practitioners need this knowledge to improve administrative efficiency and citizens’ satisfaction with digital services. Therefore, this paper presents a study of how scholars, practitioners, and caseworkers collaborated to generate data on citizen multichannel behavior. The study occurred in the public authority Udbetaling Danmark, where caseworkers periodically use an IT system to log incoming calls. First, a draft version of a classification scheme was created from co‑listening to calls and contextual interviews with citizens. To ensure engagement and a common understanding of the classification categories, the scheme was co‑developed with caseworkers in three iterations. Observations, joint discussions and interviews were used to uncover problems related to caseworkers’ understanding of the scheme, and identify technical and practical problems related to its use. With the new classification scheme, the share of logged calls increased from 10 ‑ 50 percent to 90 ‑ 95 percent. Moreover, the collaboration led to a closer understanding of citizens’ problems among the involved actors and a willingness for future collaboration to improve the services. This paper contributes to the multichannel management field of e‑government and to practitioners by presenting a method for how knowledge can be generated on citizen multichannel behavior in collaboration with caseworkers.

 

Keywords: multichannel management, citizen multichannel behavior, action research, collaboration, caseworkers, Udbetaling Danmark

 

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Journal Issue

Volume 16 Issue 2 / Oct 2018  pp87‑146

Editor: Dr Carl Erik Moe

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Keywords: task characteristics, business intelligence success, public sector, quantitative research, Adoption, non-adoption, channel choice, citizens, Germany, qualitative research, multichannel management, citizen multichannel behavior, action research, collaboration; caseworkers, Udbetaling Danmark, Public-private partnership, outsourcing, Rule of law, e-government, Digital Government, the Danish Parliamentary Ombudsman, Administrative law by design, digitalisation, administrative law, good administrative impact assessment, , crisis management, leadership, information management, situational awareness, crisis response, crisis management system

 

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