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How E Can Government Be?

Raue, Steve LU (2010) TKAM01 20101
Division of Ethnology
Abstract
E-government is a trend to offer public services online. A common assumption, at least by governments, is that it not only saves costs and time, but that it eases interaction and puts more decisive power into citizensʼ hands. Problematic with these arguments is that they are one-sided and disregard the other side of the coin. Customer-orientedness is of major importance, but there must still be someone giving the service. How digital can administration become without disrupting internal work cultures? In the current paper I take a slightly different perspective and turn common customer-orientedness inside out. High reputation and customer satisfaction do not work without the background of a healthy work place and happy staff. Thus, I... (More)
E-government is a trend to offer public services online. A common assumption, at least by governments, is that it not only saves costs and time, but that it eases interaction and puts more decisive power into citizensʼ hands. Problematic with these arguments is that they are one-sided and disregard the other side of the coin. Customer-orientedness is of major importance, but there must still be someone giving the service. How digital can administration become without disrupting internal work cultures? In the current paper I take a slightly different perspective and turn common customer-orientedness inside out. High reputation and customer satisfaction do not work without the background of a healthy work place and happy staff. Thus, I decided to put myself in the position of a public service employee for some weeks and explore the odds of e-government from the other side. Which effects would digitization have on working behind the scenes? My motivation for this study is not only a lack of focus on the backstage. Public administrations are different. They do not act on a competitive market but provide the backbone and the most vital services to our society. A long-lasting, healthy organization should, therefore, be a desired goal.

The study aims at providing insights into daily practices of public service staff and analyzes possible limitations to digitization. A major theoretical focus lies on discrepancies between ideals and the reality of work culture, the having and doing of an organization and its routines. It seems that these routines are harder to change in public services than anywhere else. The reasons are plenty and safe employment, trust or status protection are just some of the practices I encountered during my journey. (Less)
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author
Raue, Steve LU
supervisor
organization
alternative title
The Digitization of State Services
course
TKAM01 20101
year
type
H2 - Master's Degree (Two Years)
subject
keywords
Digital, Trust, State Services, E-Government, Public Sector, Work Culture, Practice Approach, Routines, Habitus, MACA, Digitization, Fashion
language
English
id
1744421
date added to LUP
2010-12-22 10:00:46
date last changed
2011-01-31 12:00:55
@misc{1744421,
  abstract     = {E-government is a trend to offer public services online. A common assumption, at least by governments, is that it not only saves costs and time, but that it eases interaction and puts more decisive power into citizensʼ hands. Problematic with these arguments is that they are one-sided and disregard the other side of the coin. Customer-orientedness is of major importance, but there must still be someone giving the service. How digital can administration become without disrupting internal work cultures? In the current paper I take a slightly different perspective and turn common customer-orientedness inside out. High reputation and customer satisfaction do not work without the background of a healthy work place and happy staff. Thus, I decided to put myself in the position of a public service employee for some weeks and explore the odds of e-government from the other side. Which effects would digitization have on working behind the scenes? My motivation for this study is not only a lack of focus on the backstage. Public administrations are different. They do not act on a competitive market but provide the backbone and the most vital services to our society. A long-lasting, healthy organization should, therefore, be a desired goal.

The study aims at providing insights into daily practices of public service staff and analyzes possible limitations to digitization. A major theoretical focus lies on discrepancies between ideals and the reality of work culture, the having and doing of an organization and its routines. It seems that these routines are harder to change in public services than anywhere else. The reasons are plenty and safe employment, trust or status protection are just some of the practices I encountered during my journey.},
  author       = {Raue, Steve},
  keyword      = {Digital,Trust,State Services,E-Government,Public Sector,Work Culture,Practice Approach,Routines,Habitus,MACA,Digitization,Fashion},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {How E Can Government Be?},
  year         = {2010},
}