Digital Era Governance and Social Media: The Case of Information Department Brunei

Digital Era Governance and Social Media: The Case of Information Department Brunei

Abdul Malik Omar (University Brunei Darussalam, Brunei)
Copyright: © 2020 |Pages: 17
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-1851-9.ch002

Abstract

Digital technology is at the forefront of transforming how governments operate around the world. Using Brunei's Information Department (InfoDept) as a case study, this chapter looks at how the agency has evolved from its inception in the 1950s to 2019 in its embrace of both old and new media to pursue its mission and objectives as a government-run media agency. The results demonstrate how new media, such as social media, can complement old media if done right. The case study on InfoDept contributes to the growing field of research related to the increased advancement, development, application, and impact of new technologies in bolstering the digital governance process. This chapter also provides strong evidence on how governments can improve its general governance process and unlock the digital dividend in the 21st century by incorporating new media into its public policy architectonic. Salient lessons for policymakers and practitioners on digital governance have also been presented in this chapter.
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Literature Review

E-governance is “…the use by government agencies of information technologies that can transform relationships with citizens, businesses, and other arms of government” (Steins, 2002: 18). E-governance also entails the exploitation of digital storage and internet communications to transform citizen-government engagement and interactions (Dunleavy, Margetts, Bastow and Tickler, 2006; Ronaghan, 2002). Done right, the incorporation of digital technology can assist governments to reduce operational costs, enhance public service delivery, and deepen citizen-to-government engagement. Meanwhile, E-government (or E-gov), refers to the use of IT, ICT, and other web-based telecommunication technologies to augment inter-organizational relations (Ronaghan, 2002) and enhance the “efficiency and effectiveness of service delivery in the public sector” (Fang, 2002). Jeong and Hai (2007) described e-government as the interactions at the digital level between people and government (C2G), government and other government agencies (G2G), government and citizens (G2E), and government and enterprise (G2B). Through social media, the government can interact with all levels of government and businesses. The difference between the two concepts is how E-governance focuses on the application of ICT for governance purposes, whereby E-government aims at improving the means of ICT-based public service delivery. Both of the concepts essential works to enhance the “public views of, and interactions with, the government via electronic channels” (Gauld, Goldfinch, and Horsburgh, 2010: p177) in reducing digital gap (Noh and Yoo, 2008) in Brunei.

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