The purpose of this chapter is to present and discuss a conceptual framework on e-Governance for development developed by the authors and the model underpinning it with particular regard to the relationship between Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs) and Governance in developing and emerging countries. The final goal is to exploit both the framework and the model to propose operational guidelines for designing a roadmap towards the implementation of e-Governance and Public Administration Reform (PAR). In defining the organizational and institutional dimensions underpinning ICT-enabled Governance, indeed, the chapter positions e-Government activities within the broader framework of e-Governance (i.e., the governance with and of ICT), as a learning type of dynamics characterized by a multidimensional and multi level area of intervention. In order to test the framework and model proposed, the chapter discusses selected case studies supporting the definition of the key issues to be considered as guidelines to implement e-Governance interventions as part of broader PAR programmes.
Background And Motivations
At the state of the art, different definitions of governance have been provided. The World Bank has identified three distinct aspects of governance: i) the form of political regime; 2) the process by which authority is exercised in the management of a country's economic and social resources for development; 3) the capacity of governments to design, formulate and implement policies and discharge functions (World Bank, 1991). For UNDP, governance is viewed as the exercise of economic, political and administrative authority to manage a country's affairs at all levels. It is about the process by which government, the private sector, citizens and groups articulate their interests, mediate their differences, and exercise their legal rights and obligations (UNDP, 1997).
The concept of governance defined by OECD denotes the use of political authority and exercise of control in a society in relation to the management of its resources for social and economic development (OECD, 1995). This broad definition encompasses the role of public authorities in establishing the environment in which economic operators function and in determining the distribution of benefits as well as the nature of the relationship between the ruler and the ruled.
In general terms, indeed, governance is the process of decision making and the process by which decisions are implemented, and an analysis of governance focuses on the formal and informal actors involved in decision-making and implementing the decisions made and the formal and informal structures that have been set in place to arrive at and implement the decision. Government is one of the actors in governance. Other actors involved in governance vary depending on the level of government that is under discussion1.