Information Technology and Surveillance: Implications for Public Administration in a New Word Order

Information Technology and Surveillance: Implications for Public Administration in a New Word Order

Akhlaque Haque (University of Alabama at Birmingham, USA)
Copyright: © 2008 |Pages: 9
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-594-8.ch008
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Abstract

The Patriot Act of 2001 has introduced significant legislative changes impacting how public managers collect, disseminate, and evaluate information for decision making. The chapter describes the theoretical underpinnings of information gathering and decision making and argues that more information gathering and subsequent use of sophisticated information gathering tools serves as an important myth promoting greater legitimacy and confidence in the government’s ability to provide security to the citizens. The chapter suggests that the rational choice approach to security is limited in its ability to evaluate values that are embedded into the decision making processes. However, being cognizant of the nonrational rulings placed on technology-based policy initiatives, public managers can be guided toward “responsible values” to avoid the dark path of control, surveillance, and the loss of freedom.

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