Reconceptualising e-government as a tool of governance: the UK case
by Ailsa Kolsaker
Electronic Government, an International Journal (EG), Vol. 3, No. 4, 2006

Abstract: Despite significant investment in G2C e-government across the developed world, citizens are not engaging as enthusiastically as anticipated. Whilst earlier studies cite technophobia, the digital divide, organisational and cultural barriers, this paper proposes that under-utilisation may be a symptom of malaise in citizen-state relations. Analysing G2C e-government development in relation to governance theory within the UK context, this paper argues that the centralised, rational-goal approach may be detrimental to usage and that embracing an open systems mode of governance may accelerate development and enhance usage. This paper concludes by suggesting that the success of G2C may rely upon e-government being reconceptualised as an instrument of devolved, communitarian governance. Empirical research is advocated as a way of exploring whether shifting to an open systems mode of governance might facilitate the development of participative, user-oriented G2C and electronically enabled democracy.

Online publication date: Mon, 04-Sep-2006

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