Innovation and Citizen-Centric Local E-Government

Innovation and Citizen-Centric Local E-Government

Stephen King (University of Leeds, UK)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-282-4.ch003
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This chapter describes a journey through e-enabled local public services. We start with the familiar local government Web site and contact centre channels to the citizen. We then move on to stage 2; how leading local governments are now mining the flow of data through these channels to develop “insight” into citizens’ service use and future needs. Next, we explore stage 3 and the role of performance measurement systems and virtual online communities in raising the citizen’s voice. Finally, stage 4 combines the parallel journeys of e-government and e-citizen and describes a co-produced future that may at last put the citizen centre-stage in the design and delivery of local public services. We use innovation theory to identify characteristics of an innovative local government and identify a need to extend this theory to accommodate the key themes of citizen-centric e-government: transparency, trust, rights, and obligations.
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Citizen-centric eGovernment services are designed to deliver increasingly cost-effective, personalised and relevant services to citizens, but also serve to enhance the democratic relationship, and build better democratic dialogue, between citizens and their government, which then enhances the practice of citizenship within society. (CCEGOV, 2007, pp.2)

This is the aspiration of the European Union as articulated by the recent EU-funded Citizen-centric eGovernment study (cc:egov). Here, the two hitherto separate strands of e-government, e-services and e-democracy, are woven together. The message being that it is not enough to use ICT to make public services more efficient, or indeed more effective from the provider’s point of view, if the outcomes do not increase public value (Moore, 1995). At the very least this implies that the voice of the citizen should be heard loud and clear in service design and delivery, and, more ambitiously that, where appropriate, the citizen should co-produce the public services they consume. This is particularly relevant for “emotional services” such as healthcare and social services. Whilst the citizen-centric agenda is laudable, the reality is one of declining public participation in voting and the democratic process in most countries, increasing cost pressures on public sector organisations, a deficit of trust in politicians, and the rise of the consumer society with citizens focusing increasingly on their rights to use public services without recognising the associated obligations. The trust issue looms particularly large due to the benefits to be gained from sharing citizen data within and between services in order to provide a personalised, appropriate service to the citizen. This is most evident in healthcare, where information on a person’s health history can enable faster and more accurate diagnosis and treatment. And more generally, access to service user demographics and service use can enable greater “customer insight” into what further services would be of most benefit to the user (e.g. the provision of benefits payments where appropriate). In some European countries, such as Finland, personal data is freely shared between citizens and service providers to enable this to happen; in others, such as the UK, citizens are far less trusting of government, particularly central government, as evidenced by the outcry at the recent loss of child benefit data including the bank account details of millions of recipients.

This chapter explores the emerging concept of Citizen-centric eGovernment (cc:egov). What benefits can be expected? How might cc:egov evolve? And what are the barriers to uptake? The focus here is on local government, and the theoretical perspective is that of innovation theory. A four-stage model of cc:egov evolution is proposed as a useful device for identifying some different manifestations of the phenomenon. Whilst the four stages will not necessarily follow chronologically in any one local government area, they do represent an evolution of ICT in local governance that presents increasing opportunities to governments and their citizens to draw on the expertise and resources of both parties in pursuit of better services and greater democratic engagement.


Citizen-Centric Electronic Government

Citizen-centricity is a complex area – with many possible dimensions. It is a “motherhood” statement that few local authorities or central governments would argue with. But on closer inspection it is also a chimera – a phrase that could describe almost any aspect of the interaction between government and the citizen. Therefore the recent EU report on citizen-centric electronic government, which they term cc:egov, is a valuable and unique point of reference (CCEGOV, 2007). Whilst the report found no single model of cc:egov across Europe there are a number of elements that stand out. Essentially the concept embraces efficient, low waste, public services targeted at citizens according to their needs. In order to do this, information has to be collected from citizens and used with their permission to enable personalised service delivery. But the concept goes beyond efficient service delivery to embrace design – citizens should have a voice in the design of public services as well as their delivery. This implies a two-way exchange of information with citizens needs and usage information flowing one way and service performance and constraints information flowing the other way. But information exchange is not enough, both parties must be willing and able to act on the information in order to generate public value. Public value, originally proposed by Moore (1995), encompasses three dimensions (Hartley, 2006, pp.47):

Key Terms in this Chapter

The Insightful Council: A council that knows its citizens’ needs and targets services at them according to their needs.

The Responsive Council: A council that provides efficient and effective responses to citizen enquiries supported by transactional systems.

Customer Insight: A rich and deep understanding of customer needs and how services fit usefully into their lives.

The Insightful Citizen: A citizen that has access to extensive information on public services and their performance and can report service failures and communicate with other citizens to exchange information and support.

Innovation: The implementation of novel ideas and practices that are sufficiently large to affect the character of the organisation.

Citizen-Centric Electronic Government: ICT-enabled public services that are cost effective, personalised and relevant to citizen needs and also service to enhance the democratic relationship between citizen and government.

Co-Production: Citizens and professionals working together to jointly design and deliver services. Each recognises the others’ unique expertise and contribution.

Co-Produced Electronic Governance: The appropriate use of ICT to support the co-production of public services. Typically via a shared platform that enables citizens and professionals to communicate, share ideas and support each other.

Complete Chapter List

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Table of Contents
G. David Garson
Christopher G. Reddick
Christopher G. Reddick
Chapter 1
Vishanth Weerakkody, Gurjit Dhillon
Most public services are overly complex, and separate where citizens have no choice in the service that they receive. All too often, Information and... Sample PDF
Moving from E-Government to T-Government: A Study of Process Reengineering Challenges in a UK Local Authority Context
Chapter 2
Tino Schuppan
This chapter addresses the link between e-government, organizational networks related to it, and the possibilities for structural reform of... Sample PDF
Local Level Structural Change and E Government in Germany
Chapter 3
Stephen King
This chapter describes a journey through e-enabled local public services. We start with the familiar local government Web site and contact centre... Sample PDF
Innovation and Citizen-Centric Local E-Government
Chapter 4
Krassimira Paskaleva-Shapira
This chapter shares experience on aspects related to the methodology and modeling of a framework of City E-Governance Readiness. We discuss Europe’s... Sample PDF
Assessing Local Readiness for City E-Governance in Europe
Chapter 5
Mark Deakin
The chapter examines the IntelCities Community of Practice (CoP) supporting the development of the organization’s e-Learning platform, knowledge... Sample PDF
The IntelCities Community of Practice: The eGov Services Model for Socially Inclusive and Participatory Urban Regeneration Programs
Chapter 6
Sarah Cotterill
In the United Kingdom and throughout the world there is increasing emphasis on public sector organizations working together in local partnerships.... Sample PDF
Local E-Government Partnerships
Chapter 7
Ian McLoughlin
In the United Kingdom, major investments have been made in e-government in order to modernize government and improve the efficiency and quality of... Sample PDF
Towards Digital Governance in UK Local Public Services?
Chapter 8
Bryan Reece, Kim Andreasson
There has been considerable attention given to the issue of unrepresentative access; however, research to date has focused on individual level... Sample PDF
Institutional E-Government Development
Chapter 9
Tina Jukic, Mateja Kunstelj, Mitja Decman, Mirko Vintar
In this chapter, 3 main aspects of municipal e-government in Slovenia are investigated thoroughly: supply, demand, and the view of municipal... Sample PDF
E-Government in Slovene Municipalities: Analysing Supply, Demand and its Effects
Chapter 10
Lourdes Torres, Vicente Pina, Basilio Acerete, Sonia Royo
This work tries to assess to what extent e-government enables transparency, openness and, hence, accountability in public administrations. For this... Sample PDF
E-Government and Accountability in EU Local Governments
Chapter 11
Stephen K. Aikins
A Comparative Study of Municipal Adoption of Internet-Based Citizen Participation Sample PDF
A Comparative Study of Municipal Adoption of Internet-Based Citizen Participation
Chapter 12
Janita Stuart, Val Hooper
The uptake of Internet voting for local government elections is still in its infancy worldwide. While it holds many potential benefits, there are... Sample PDF
Sociological Factors Influencing Internet Voting
Chapter 13
Sonja Knapp, Yun Chen, Andy Hamilton, Volker Coors
Urban Planning is a multi-disciplinary process. Social-economic, environmental and natural resources issues need to be considered to ensure urban... Sample PDF
An ePlanning Case Study in Stuttgart Using OPPA 3D
Chapter 14
Jennifer Evans-Cowley, Maria Manta Conroy
Municipalities often struggle to provide citizen participation opportunities that are informative and engaging. E-government tools hold the... Sample PDF
Local Government Experiences with ICT for Participation
Chapter 15
Michael J. Jensen
This chapter analyzes the “impact” of information and communication technologies (ICTs) on local government officials’ policy decision-making.... Sample PDF
Electronic Democracy and Citizen Influence in Government
Chapter 16
Yu-Che Chen, Ashley Dorsey
To meet the current and future senior citizens’ demand for e-government, local governments will need to have a better understanding of their needs.... Sample PDF
E-Government for Current and Future Senior Citizens
Chapter 17
Don-yun Chen, Tong-yi Huang, Naiyi Hsiao, Tze-Luen Lin, Chung-Pin Lee
This chapter introduces a case of e-deliberation in Taiwan. Democratic deepening can be achieved by the application of information and communication... Sample PDF
Experimental E-Deliberation in Taiwan: A Comparison of Online and Face-to-Face Citizens' Conferences in Beitou, Taipei
Chapter 18
Greg Streib, Ignacio Navarro
The development of e-government has attracted considerable scholarly interest in recent years, but relatively little has been written about the... Sample PDF
City Managers and E-Government Development: Assessing Technology Literacy and Leadership Needs
Chapter 19
Zhenyu Huang
This chapter presents a comprehensive analysis of the 3,099 U.S. counties’ adoption and diffusion of e-government and the functions provided by... Sample PDF
U.S. Counties' Efforts and Results: An Empirical Research on Local Adoption and Diffusion of E-Government
Chapter 20
Suzanne J. Piotrowski, Erin L. Borry
Government websites are quickly becoming the first point of contact for citizens and visitors seeking information. Local government websites’... Sample PDF
Transparency and Local Government Websites
Chapter 21
Marc Holzer, Aroon Manoharan
The chapter is based on the results of an international survey of municipal Web portals conducted through a collaboration between the E-Governance... Sample PDF
E-Governance and Quality of Life: Associating Municipal E-Governance with Quality of Life Worldwide
Chapter 22
Mete Yildiz
This chapter presents an analysis of local e-government adoption and implementation in Turkey. To this end, academic articles, various laws, and... Sample PDF
An Overview of Local E-Government Adoption and Implementation in Turkey
Chapter 23
Bekir Parlak, Zahid Sobaci
This chapter aims to evaluate the e-government practices in metropolitan municipalities in Turkey by determining functionality levels of... Sample PDF
The Functionality of Website-Based Services of Metropolitan Municipalities in Turkey
Chapter 24
Patrizia Lombardi, Ian Cooper, Krassimira Paskaleva-Shapira, Mark Deakin
Harnessing ICTs effectively is one of the main vehicles for achieving the EU’s 2010 strategy to become the most competitive digital knowledge-based... Sample PDF
The Challenge of Designing User-Centric E-Services: European Dimensions
Chapter 25
Raoul J. Freeman
This chapter reviews various strategic frameworks for e-government which include goals and objectives. Among typical goals are the following... Sample PDF
Goals Measurement and Evaluation of E-Gov Projects
Chapter 26
Jussi S. Jauhiainen, Tommi Inkinen
Finland is among the leading information societies. The national information society strategy aims to make the information society accessible by... Sample PDF
E-Governance and the Information Society in Periphery
Chapter 27
Sean M. Bossinger
Free, libre, or open source software (FLOSS) offers the promise of cost-free, modifiable, high-quality software, for a multitude of tasks (e.g.... Sample PDF
Open Source Software Use in Local Governments
Chapter 28
Mark Cassell
This chapter examines empirically, the intended and unintended consequences that occur when a local government chooses to migrate away from a... Sample PDF
When Local Governments Choose Open Source Technology
Chapter 29
The Wireless City  (pages 554-568)
Sukumar Ganapati, Christian F. Schoepp
In this chapter, we explore the evolution of wireless broadband networks in cities. We examine the technological alternatives for city-wide... Sample PDF
The Wireless City
Chapter 30
Paul M.A. Baker, Avonne Bell, Nathan W. Moon
This chapter presents the results of an examination of the current state of U.S. municipal wireless network design and policies with regards to... Sample PDF
Accessibility Issues in Municipal Wireless Networks
Chapter 31
Roland J. Cole, Isabel A. Cole, Jennifer A. Kurtz
The key reason for including this chapter in this book is that the development of more advanced forms of e-government requires that residences have... Sample PDF
Municipal Efforts to Promote Residential Broadband
Chapter 32
Jenni Viitanen, Richard Kingston
This chapter will discuss the implications of the network society paradigm for e-government and the role of ICTs in the regeneration of urban... Sample PDF
The Role of Public Participation GIS in Local Service Delivery
Chapter 33
Terry Murphy
Geographical Information System (GIS) technology applications for use in the field of economic development are relatively new. Local economic... Sample PDF
GIS: Changing the Economic Development World
Chapter 34
Paul T. Jaeger
Many residents and local communities rely on public libraries for access to and training to use e-government. Many local governments direct citizens... Sample PDF
Public Libraries and Local E-Government
Chapter 35
Muhammad Mustafa Kamal, M. Themistocleous
Literature indicates that Local Government Authorities (LGAs) have problems in meeting citizens’ demands. This may be attributed to the limitations... Sample PDF
Investigating Enterprise Application Integration Adoption in the Local Government Authorities
Chapter 36
Jeffrey Roy
This chapter will compare the emergence of e-government in Denmark and Canada with a particular emphasis on the municipal and inter-governmental... Sample PDF
Enterprise Application Integration; Healthcare Organizations; Information Technology ; Large Organizations; Local Government Authorities
Chapter 37
Genie N.L. Stowers
This case describes the case of a small California city, San Carlos, a continued early adopter in the e-government areas. The chapter asks the... Sample PDF
The Little City That Could: The Case of San Carlos, California
Chapter 38
Howard A. Frank
ActiveStrategy’s performance management application deploys the widely utilized Balanced Scorecard framework in a dashboard platform designed to... Sample PDF
Implementing ActiveStrategy in Miami-Dade County
Chapter 39
Greta Nasi
The purpose of this chapter is to assess the current status and level of technology in providing on line services among larger Italian... Sample PDF
E-Government and Local Service Delivery: The Case of Italian Local Governments
Chapter 40
Andreas Ask, Mathias Hatakka, Åke Grönlund
This chapter discusses practices, opportunities, and challenges in local e-government project management by means of a case study involving... Sample PDF
The Örebro City Citizen-Oriented E-Government Strategy
Chapter 41
Ik Jae Chung
As a nationwide e-government project in South Korea, the Information Network Village project was launched in 2001. It was designed to increase... Sample PDF
Toward E-Government Sustainability: The Information Network Village Project in South Korea
Chapter 42
Samiaji Sarosa, Jenjang Sri Lestari
This chapter examined the state of Jogjakarta’s local governments Web sites (i.e, Bantul, Sleman, Kulon Progo, City of Jogjakarta and The Special... Sample PDF
The Level and Impact of Web Based E-Government Adoption: The Case of Jogjakarta's Local Governments
Chapter 43
Maniam Kaliannan, Hazman Shah Abdullah, Murali Raman
Despite the many quarrels and complaints about the quality of local government in Malaysia, it continues to be an important part of the overall... Sample PDF
Local E-Government in Malaysia: An Empirical Investigation
Chapter 44
Sam Lubbe, Shawren Singh
This chapter explores the issues of the interface between Information Systems (IS) and society. We investigate IS and users of these systems at a... Sample PDF
From Conception to Demise: Implications for Users of Information Systems in Changing a Local Parastatal Educational Institution in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
Chapter 45
José Rodrigues Filho, João Rodrigues dos Santos Junior
E-government has the potential to enhance democracy and transparency, increasing opportunities for citizen interaction. Literature has given many... Sample PDF
Local E-Government in Brazil: Poor Interaction and Local Politics as Usual
Chapter 46
R. K. Mitra, M. P. Gupta, G. P. Sahu
While Information Technology (IT) is being embraced by various wings of the government, the police in India have however, been slow to adopt IT. The... Sample PDF
Indian Police E-Government System: A Study of Provincial Police
Chapter 47
Arla Juntunen
There are still only few studies of the cooperation and collaboration of the governmental agencies and local authorities. This chapter presents a... Sample PDF
Joint Service Development with the Local Authorities
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