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E-Government: Towards G2C&lt;&gt;C2G Communication. Leslie Regan Shade University of Ottawa Department of Communication shade@aix1.uottawa.ca. Talk Outline. Overview of Trends E - G overnment E - D emocracy C itizen E ngagement C2G&lt;&gt;G2C C ommunication Your Time!?. Trends in KBE/S.

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e government towards g2c c2g communication
E-Government: Towards G2C<>C2G Communication

Leslie Regan Shade

University of Ottawa

Department of Communication


talk outline
Talk Outline
  • Overview of Trends
  • E-Government
  • E-Democracy
  • Citizen Engagement
  • C2G<>G2C Communication
  • Your Time!?
trends in kbe s
Trends in KBE/S
  • Globalization
  • Media Concentration
  • Growth in Supranational Forums (e.g., WTO, IMF)
  • Growing Anti-Corporate and Citizenship Movements
more stakeholders want a say in governance
More Stakeholders Want a Say in Governance
  • NGOs, civil society groups, citizens
  • Lobby groups on the left and the right
  • Using traditional and new media
changes in government funding
Changes in Government Funding
  • Public/Private sector partnerships
  • Downsizing in public sector
  • Contracting/outsourcing work
  • Privatization of functions
  • Decentralization
  • ‘New Economy’ Ethos
  • security concerns
  • privacy
  • confidentiality
  • stress
  • overwork and/or under-work
  • fraying social safety net
challenges to governance
Challenges to Governance
  • Engagement-with citizens and with media
  • Widening consultation processes-stakeholder summits
  • Use of ICTs
what s happening in canada
What’s Happening in Canada?
  • Government Online Initiative - www.gol-ged.gc.ca. Principles are to:
  • inform the public
  • consider public concerns
  • develop policies
  • implement programs
ensure that government is
Ensure that Government is…
  • visible
  • accessible
  • accountable
good information
“Good” Information
  • free flow
  • continuous
  • open
  • relevant
  • understandable
  • reliable
other government initiatives
Other Government Initiatives
  • Industry Canada’s Connecting Canadians
  • CAP
  • Volnet
  • School Net
  • Access.ca
new kid on the block
New Kid on the Block
  • Broadband Task Force – broadband.gc.ca
  • What’s the content driving broadband?
why go online
Why Go Online?
  • Branding Canada
  • Better Service
  • Better Government
  • Stimulates e-commerce
  • 24-7 availability
big issues
Big Issues
  • Privacy
  • Security
  • Accessibility
  • Consultation
big issues privacy
Big Issues – Privacy
  • Assuring privacy is key
  • Many don’t feel secure doing online transactions….
  • Why e-commerce initiatives targeted consumer privacy needs - Bill C6
privacy elements
Privacy Elements
  • Confidentiality
  • Authentication
  • Access control
  • Integrity
  • No fraud!
big issues access
Big Issues-Access
  • Technical infrastructure
  • Social infrastructure
  • Literacy
  • Content
  • Design
  • Universal Usability
accessibility issues
Accessibility Issues
  • Persons with disabilities
  • Low literacy rates
  • No domestic access
  • Canada’s Dual Digital Divide
big issues consultation
Big Issues-Consultation
  • User input into design of system
  • Navigation
  • Content
  • Online or through focus groups?
types of e government initiatives
Types of E-Government Initiatives
  • Citizen access to government information
  • Facilitating general compliance
  • Citizen access to personal benefits
  • Procurement including bidding, purchasing, and payment
e gov services cont d
E-Gov Services, cont’d
  • Government-to-government information and service integration
  • Citizen participation
  • The Portal…”one-stop shopping”…
pilot projects for consultation u s
Pilot Projects for Consultation: U.S.
  • "E-Government: The Next American Revolution“
  • Council for Excellence in Government
  • move from 1990s dot-com decade....to dot-gov decade
  • public wants to be a more informed
e government experiment
E-government Experiment
  • “an experiment in interactive legislation”
  • Senators Fred Thompson and Joe Lieberman
  • topics”-- citizen access, standards and protocols, public kiosks, agency cooperation, public-private partnerships....

Comment from:Derek Ohlms

Organization: Vanderbilt University

Organization type: Academic Institution

Date submitted:8 AUGUST, 2000 01:07 AM

Topic: Study: Disparities in Access to the Internet


I am particularly interested in the availability and use of internet access through public schools andlibraries. How many people per workstation do these sorts of forums offer?

Also, who has access through facilities that place significant limitations on time and demand cash foraccess.

u k people s panel 1998
U.K.: People's Panel -1998
  • Part of the 'Modernising Government' initiatives
  • Cabinet Office Modernising Public Services Group
  • MORI (market research company)
  • Birmingham University's School of Public Policy
people s panel
People’s Panel
  • 5,000 members of the public
  • representative of the UK population: age, gender, region and a wide range of other demographic indicators
  • quantitative
  • qualitative
people s panel33
People’s Panel
  • quantitative (telephone surveys, postal mail-in surveys, face2face interview surveys)
  •  qualitative (focus groups, workshops, depth interviews, citizens juries, deliberative polls)
e democracy goals
E-Democracy Goals
  • Use IT to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of democracy
  • Increase convenience & timeliness of citizen/government interaction
  • Reduce cost
e government is part of e democracy
E-Government is part of E-Democracy
  • Informing citizens
  • E-politics: use of Internet to improve effectiveness of political decision-making
  • Facilitate participation in process
skills learning
Skills Learning
  • Citizens will have to learn how to use e-democracy
  • They need the motivation
  • Trust…
  • Literacy Skills
  • Access to ICTs
vision of democracy using new media
Vision of Democracy Using New Media
  • interactivity
  • global
  • free speech
  • free association
  • sharing of information and knowledge
  • challenges official public opinion
ideal of strong democracy
Ideal of Strong Democracy
  • accountable governments
  • informed citizenry
  • citizen participation
  • in affairs of the state
  • in civil society
design is important
Design is Important
  • people-centred
  • participatory design
  • citizen-centred evaluation of e-government services
  • inadequate pre-testing can lead to flops
  • ex: kiosk applications
  • location of kiosk
  • interface designs
seattle wto meetings
Seattle WTO Meetings

Pics from Council of Canadians site

  • Local affiliates
  • Pictures, videos, audio, articles
  • E-mail updates
  • Archives and links
indy media franchises
Indy Media Franchises??!!
  • International in scope
  • Policy to start own indy media centre
  • Working groups: technical and dispatch
problems with e democracy
Problems with E-Democracy
  • Misuse of IT
  • Endless babble
  • Overload can be dangerous
  • Endless babble
  • Accountability to citizens
  • Endless and often mindless babble
  • A constructive-free zone…..
  • Office of Learning Technologies project
  • Building public space online
  • Hub InfoCentral
  • Netizen News
  • Citizen Forums

Forum moderators are responsible for facilitating discussions and ensuring that the Civil Rules arerespected. They reserve the right to take whatevermeasures are required to ensure the Civil Rules arerespected by site visitors.


Such measures include, but arenot limited to, refusing to accept any message that may be construed or interpreted as discriminatory,promulgatinghatred or obscenity, or defamation of any kind.

issues with digital debates
Issues with Digital Debates
  • Limit time for discussion
  • Specify clear topic
  • Independent moderator
  • Clear rules
  • Quick summary
what tools for consultation
What tools for consultation?
  • What’s the most appropriate?
  • Web forums?
  • E-Mail…???
  • Listserv – moderated, unmoderated, digest or no digest
  • Can too much e-mail create an avalanche?
most suitable online discussion framework
Most suitable online discussion framework…
  • Real time or asynchronous
  • How close are decision makers to the process?
  • Officials – lurkers or participants?
  • Do public servants contribute to discussion?
  • Standards for response time
public service culture and new media
Public Service Culture and New Media
  • Public servants dealing with increasingly ambiguous role
  • Most government websites designed to disseminate information, not gather it
  • Mass listening is changing – opinion polls are not the only option
ps culture cont d
PS Culture Cont’d
  • Departments must create new structures to engage with citizens
  • Within government communication structure, perhaps more liaisons – press officers, librarians, lawyers, etc.
  • (from Report on Wilton Park Conference on E-Government, 15-18 Nov. 1999)
risk of e government project failure
Risk of E-Government Project Failure
  • Management confusion
  • Lack of focus and definition
  • Lack of IT skills in public sector
  • Grandiose scope – all the bells, whistles and java applets
  • Not enough $$
calling all canadian eyeballs
Calling all Canadian Eyeballs!!
  • In an information-rich environment, how to distinguish oneself from the mass of….American content and stuff???
  • …or from Canadian commercial sites…
  • …or from Canadian media mergers …BCE>Thomson>CTV; Canwest>Hollinger; Videotron.Quebecor…
so what s at stake
So, What’s at Stake?
  • Public service effectiveness and efficiency
  • Privacy and security
  • Equity and community
  • Governance
  • Loss of public service jobs through digitization???
let s consider
Let’s Consider…..
  • Will Internet infrastructure grow exponentially?
  • How can new media overcome, rather than exacerbate, issues of access to publicly-funded services?
  • You said paperless office???!
c2g g2c communication
C2G<>G2C Communication
  • Realize goal of packaging information as a social good, rather than a costly consumer product
  • Citizen engagement is key
  • Design level (end-users)
  • Content
  • Consultation
your turn
Your Turn
  • Best practices
  • Worst practices
  • Organizational culture – cog in the wheel or “empowered”?
  • How to attract and retain new grads?