… a core concept in Implementation and Delivery and Atlas107

Concept description

Leslie Pal (reference below) summarizes the new emphasis on employing digital technology to improve service delivery.

Pal writes (p. 213-214):

“What has stimulated new thinking, however, is the merging of digital technology and service. As we mentioned earlier, some (Dunleavy et al., 2005) see this as a new public service paradigm. We do not go that far. Many things in government are still delivered in old-fashioned ways, from garbage removal to meals-on-wheels. Moreover, rule-bound bureaucracies are likely to simply shift their rules to be embedded in software as opposed to codes and guidelines in the hierarchy (Fountain, 2001). But, … it is undeniable that the “digital state” is a qualitatively different animal from what preceded it, and that has certain consequences for the organization of government and the delivery of services.

“According to Borins, “The most significant change that could flow from IT-enabled government, however, is a reshaping of the public service that consolidates many common functions previously located separately in each department. Three aspects … are integrated service delivery organizations, joined-up policy development and knowledge management, and integrated support organizations” (Borins, 2007, p. 16). From a service provision perspective, this new IT environment – Web 2.0 governance – adds new channels (Web, email) for citizens to register their preferences and new modes of delivery of services, especially ones that are primarily information based, and new forms of collaboration among public agencies, private and nonprofit organizations, and citizens (Tapscott & Williams, 2006).

“A particularly important development is allowing citizens access to either general information or personal information (e.g., medical records, tax files) that previously would have been available only with great difficulty or not at all. Another development is the sharing of service delivery data in real time with citizens, for example, GPS data on snow removal operations in a city. Within governments, Web 2.0’s enhanced capabilities are allowing (mostly younger) public servants to organize their own communities using blogs, wikis, and social networking tools analogous to Facebook, and most governments are wrestling with how to provide these tools both internally, and in ways that will allow public servants to connect with wider constituencies of stakeholders.”

See also: New Public Management.

Atlas topic, subject, and course

Promoting Innovation and Driving Change (core topic) in Implementation and Delivery and Atlas107


Leslie Pal (2014), Beyond Policy Analysis – Public Issue Management in Turbulent Times, Fifth Edition, Nelson Education, Toronto. See Beyond Policy Analysis – Book Highlights.

Borins, S. (2007). Conceptual framework. In S. Borins et al., Digital state at the leading edge. (pp. 14–36). Toronto, ON: IPAC and the University of Toronto Press.

Dunleavy, P., et al. (2005). New public management is dead – Long live digital-era governance. Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, 16, 467–494.

Fountain, J. E. (2001). Building the virtual state: Information technology and institutional change. Washington, DC: Brookings Institution Press.

Tapscott, D., & Williams, A. D. (2006). Wikinomics: How mass collaboration changes everything. New York, NY: Portfolio.

Page created by: Ian Clark, last modified 12 April 2017.

Image: Korea IT Times, e-Government, at http://www.koreaittimes.com/image/e-government-2, accessed 6 April 2017.