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Weaving Politically Relevant and Inclusive Networks through Egovernance in Developing Countries PowerPoint Presentation
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Weaving Politically Relevant and Inclusive Networks through Egovernance in Developing Countries
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  1. Vikas Nath Founder DigitalGovernance.org KnowNet.org Initiative DevNetJobs.org Weaving Politically Relevant and Inclusive Networks through Egovernance in Developing Countries 3rd International Conference on Information Technology and Economic Development Ghana March 4, 2004

  2. ICT Penetration leads to Increase in Information Access & Flows Information Access Opportunities / Avenues available to individuals to seek information from different sources. For instance: other individuals, institutions, and public domains & databases. Information Flow Supply / Availability of information within a society. Information flows may be 'restricted' in some societies and 'open' in others.

  3. Schematic Representation of Enhanced Information Access and Flow Pre-ICT Society Post-ICT Society

  4. A Missing Element: Geometry of Information Flows ICT has led to greater inter-linkages, increase in intensity of interactions, and greater opportunity to broadcast content in a networked society But if ICT is to provide CLEAR benefits to the unreached and to the disadvantaged communities, then there is a need to focus on the "Geometry of Information Flows"

  5. Geometry of Information Flows and 2 Key Lessons for E-Governance Project Formulations • Which new Constituencies / Target groups have been brought under the Governance sphere ? (INCLUSIVE NETWORK) • Has any Use-Worthy / Relevant Services started to become available to citizens brought under the E-governance network? • (POLITICAL RELEVANCE)

  6. Guidelines for Conceiving E-Governance Projects • Who are the Target groups that we want to reach out to ? • What are the key governance information needs of the Target Group ? • What are the Existing channels by which information reaches to the Target Group ? • What is the weakest link in the chain of information flows: from source of Information to the Target Communities? • Can E-governance deliver products and services that cannot be delivered by the conventional means ?

  7. Geometrically Sensitive E-Governance Models and Issues • Wider Dissemination Model • Critical Flow Model • Comparative Analysis Model • E-advocacy/ Lobbying and Pressure group model • Interactive-Service Model

  8. Wider Disseminating Model Information: Public Domain Wider Public Domain Wider Domain • Laws and Legislations • Local Govt. Offices and Officials Information • Government Budget, Plans and Expenditures • Key Judicial Decisions: state vs. citizen decisions Public Domain Information

  9. Examples Africa: AllAfrica.com political news relating to various countries in Africa Cameroon: Ministry of Finance and Budget(Tax Information) http://www.impots.gov.cm Hungary: Government Portal http://www.ekormanyzat.hu India: Directory of Government Ministries www.goidirectory.nic.in Senegal: Government Online http://www.gouv.sn

  10. Issues Political Will and E-Champions (Top-Down Guidance) Information Sharing Culture (with Government as Role Model) ICT Training of Governement Bureaucrats and Technocrats Auditing of Information Provided on Websites Information Management System Creation of Infomediaries and involvement of the Middlemen

  11. Critical Flow Model Critical Information: Private Domain Wider Public Domain • Corruption Information • Enquiry reports, scientific research, impact studies commissioned by the Government • Company’s Green Ratings • Human Rights Violations Records Wider Domain Private Domain Information

  12. Examples Nigeria: Anti-Corruption Internet Database (ACID)http://www.antigraft.org Mexico: Declarenet www.declaranet.gob.mx Kenya: Busting Corruption using the Internethttp://www.cddc.vt.edu/knownet/articles/kenya-case.html India: Central Vigilance Committee www.cvc.nic.in Bangladesh: Human Rights Portal www.banglarights.net Colombia: Transparent Municipalities www.paipa.gov.co

  13. Issues “Access to Information” Rights Prioritization of E-governance objectives Defining LIMITS of E-governance Independent Media Mature Civil Society Organisations Innovative Ideas for Strategic Application of Information

  14. Comparative Analysis Model Information: Private / Public Domain + Public / Private Domain Wider Public Domain Public/Private Domain Wider Domain Public Domain Information Public/Private Domain

  15. Comparative Analysis Model • Court Rulings / Historical Archive • Tracking Performance Records / Financial Assets Growth of Ministers • Electoral Candidates Information • Based on Precedence Information • (time line) • With and Without Information • Bringing out Best / Worst Practices • Disaster Response • Comparative policies- Bt Cotton & Trademark Potatoes Campaign

  16. Examples Argentina: Cristal (Budget comparisons and use of public funds) www.cristal.gov.ar Sri Lanka: Kothmale Project (Comparison of Education Indicators) India: Green Ratings of Chief Ministers www.cseindia.org India: Comparative Learning from Disasters www.nic.in

  17. Issues Digitization of Archived Governance-related information Creation of Database-driven Electronic Information Repositories Adoption of ICT in everyday functioning by different arms of Government: the executive body, the parliament, the judiciary Civil society and media access to governance information databases and records

  18. Mobilisation and Lobbying Model Building Allies / Networking Networks for Concerted Action Virtual Community Communities Individuals Real Community Common Goal Networks Interest Groups

  19. Examples • Planned, Directed, Strategic flow of Information to build strong issue-based Allies / solidarity to complement action in Real World. • (often through combination of other models) • South Africa: Petitions Onlinehttp://www.petitions.co.za • e-Signature Campaigns • e-Groups on Agriculture • Zimbabwe Kubatana.net (using emails for lobbying)

  20. Issues Collaboration, Cooperation and Partnership Approach Issue-focused agenda Access to ICT by Civil Society Organizations ICT trained human resources within different sectors of the society- academics, research, media, NGOs etc.

  21. Service Delivery Model USER SERVICE PROVIDER E-Government E- debates E-ballots E-procurement of services E-administration: taxes, parking tickets, licenses

  22. Examples Brazil: Citizen Services Centre Nigeria: Nigerian Assembly  http://www.nigerianassembly.com India: Bhoomi Project www.revdept-01.kar.nic.in South Africa: Independent Electoral Commission (new!)http://www.elections.org.za Namibia: Parliamentary website for bill discussions www.parliament.gov.na Nepal: Municipal Services Online www.bharatpurmun.org.np

  23. Issues Infrastructure and Connectivity Information Need Analysis Legislative and Regulatory Framework (Eg. Digital Signatures, Record Keeping) Information Security and Crime Prevention Change in Governance Attitude and Functioning Pricing of E-Governance Services

  24. Overriding Issues Removal of Mind Barriers! Little recognition to people’s Knowledge and their ability to make Informed decisions. Creation and focusing on Intermediary Organisations Provide access to governance information, and training on its use to core group of people– through Schools, NGOs, Post Offices. ICT Literacy Levels Low ICT literacy implies lowercapacity to learn, interact and derive positive benefits from available information Government as a Role Model Need to have information-sharing culture INNOVATIONS

  25. End Note • Strength of any E-Governance Initiative is based on the strengths of Human Networks within which they operate, including a robust, active and questioning / inquisitive civil society.

  26. For more information: Vikas Nath founder DigitalGovernance.org A network of over 2600 individuals KnowNet@Knowetweaver.org or v.nath-alumni@lse.ac.uk