Exploring the M-Government

Exploring the M-Government

Gabriela Quintanilla (Centro de Investigación y Docencia Económica, México)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-5888-2.ch266
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Abstract

Today, information technologies have revolutionized governments and society. Information flows through mobile devices, not just for communication, but also to obtain services and the right of satisfying new demands and expectations. Mobile government (m-Government) has begun to leverage these tools to improve services, create more opportunities, and extend access (ITU/OECD, 2011). The amalgamation of smart technologies with m-Government has opened new possibilities to promote participation and collaboration, not only facilitating interaction between individuals and governments, but also reducing the digital divide. The goal of this research is to analyze the feasibility of m-Government using smart technologies, to promote a shift that motivates citizens to use the new platform and services for participation in government operation.
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Background

The development of information technology has been extraordinary. Its growth has been characterized by social, economic and political change resulting in new concepts and ideas that promote a huge increase in communication and the flow of information. These advances have affected the behavior of governments, modifying the way they normally develop and giving them the opportunity to improve both the quality of services and the efficiency of their delivery.

Information technologies (IT) have enabled governments to progress. Their continuous development has resulted in the creation of strategies that help achieve better results. Among them is the e-Government, which adopted IT in government practice (Grönlund & Horan, 2004; Luna-Reyes et al., 2010) to delivered services, improve governance, promote citizen empowerment and establish a regulatory framework. However, there are different degrees of progress depending on the economic, political and social development of each country and the speed with which they can process new information technologies.

But e-Government has evolved. The incorporation of social networks into government websites and the development of new information devices have changed the functions of front office and back-office operations in government agencies. These begin to be targeted towards a new tool for government, the m-Government, characterized by the utilization of all kind of wireless and mobile technologies for delivery services (El Kiki & Lawrence, 2006; Kushchu & Kuscu, 2003).

M-Government is a concept that has no theoretical foundation; therefore there is no single definition (El Kiki, Lawrence, & Steele, 2005). However, most authors view it as an extension of e-Government, limiting its use to mobile technologies (Al-Khamayseh & Lawrence, 2006; Antovski & Gusev, 2005; Kushchu & Kuscu, 2003; Lallana, 2008; Östberg, 2003). Zálesak (2003) complemented this idea by defining it as a set of strategies and tools that modify the traditional governance functionality to facilitate communication and interaction, but also to provide instant availability of services. From these ideas follows the goal of m-Government: to create a beneficial public platform with easy access to citizens using mobile technology, in order to enable access to e-Services anytime, anywhere (Antovski & Gusev, 2005; El Kiki & Lawrence, 2006).

Key Terms in this Chapter

M-Government: The use of mobile technologies to deliver better services and improve communications with citizens.

Privacy and Security: The series of actions to protect personal data and mobile devices from disruption, robbery, viruses or malicious software.

Mobile Devices: A set of devices used to communicate or access to information anywhere anytime; usually refers the mobile phone.

Smart Technologies: New information technologies, which help people to get informed and communicated, as well as promote collaboration using Internet.

Information Technologies: Instruments that allow data transmission through distance, which can be done as voice, image, symbol or data.

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