National Electronic Government: Building an Institutional Framework for Joined Up Government : a Comparative Study

National Electronic Government: Building an Institutional Framework for Joined Up Government : a Comparative Study

National Electronic Government: Building an Institutional Framework for Joined Up Government : a Comparative Study

National Electronic Government: Building an Institutional Framework for Joined Up Government : a Comparative Study

Synopsis

This volume presents a comparative study to evaluate the success of the implementation of e-government in the UK, US, France, Germany, Finland, Australia and Japan. The detailed study examines national e-government strategies and their institutional framework of coordination and cooperation by focusing on the relevant players, the interplay of administrative levels and the types of control used by them. Drawing on literature on comparative public administration and comparative law, this book makes an important contribution to our understanding of advanced e-government.

Excerpt

Once upon a time, public administration was considered a system which was primarily characterised by inertia, thus evolving very slowly at best. in the course of the last two decades, however, public administration has been increasingly affected by the faster and faster changes in modern societies. Government has been reinvented and re-engineered, and long before its new shape could be finalised, the next wave of modernisation had already started: electronic government.

At first, the rush for e-government was certainly fuelled by the overall excitement about the opportunities entailed by internet technology, which seemed to herald a final turn towards the information society. Correspondingly, the lowest common denominator of all attempts to sketch the upcoming changes in public administration was not much more than a call for heavy exploitation of the potential of internet-based information and communications technologies (ICTs). the rather technical approach has quickly been blended with the customer-orientation of New Public Management (NPM) and established ideas to strengthen democracy by enhancing public accountability. This broader basis has made it less susceptible to the decline of the 'e-fashion' which shook the New Economy.

Nevertheless, the e-government movement has also become aware of the fact that electronic government is not a sweeping internet revolution but rather a cumbersome evolutionary process that has to be managed. of course, the vision of more efficient, transparent and responsive administrative services, provided electronically at a single window twenty-four hours a day and seven days a week, which has been shared by all public services working towards e-government, has made the approach very popular, and has helped motivate public officials and helped public administrations take their first steps very quickly. But the approach has focused very much on the interface between public administration and its citizens, and enterprises and most governments embraced this focus as it promised the most spectacular and politically valuable success stories. Even

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