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BOOK chapter / Transport

A Critical Analysis of the Potential of ICTs for Democracy and Governance

Author(s): FINGER Matthias

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ABSTRACT

This book presents a citizen-centric perspective of the dual components of e-government and e-governance. E-government refers to the practice of online public reporting by government to citizens, and to service delivery via the Internet. E-governance represents the initiatives for citizens to participate and provide their opinion on government websites. This volume in the Public Solutions Handbook Series focuses on various e-government initiatives from the United States and abroad, and will help guide public service practitioners in their transformation to e-government. The book provides important recommendations and suggestions oriented towards practitioners, and makes a significant contribution to e-government by showcasing successful models and highlighting the lessons learned in the implementation processes. Chapter coverage includes: * Online fiscal transparency * Performance reporting * Improving citizen participation * Privacy issues in e-governance * Internet voting * E-government at the local level.

In Chapter 5, "A Critical Analysis of the Potential of ICTs for Democracy and Governance", Matthias Finger proposes a new start for e-governance, emphasizing that the potential of ICTs for government is much larger than what we have seen so far. The chapter shows that this potential covers all the main areas in which government is active, namely policymaking, regulation, and service delivery. It focuses particularly on the participatory aspect of e-government, or e-democracy, whereby citizens will be involved not only at times of elections and sometimes referenda but along the entire policy process, ranging from policy formulation to implementation, and at all levels of government.