Citizen Empowerment and E-Government Application: Differences in 27 EU Countries
CEU Political Science Journal, Vol. 4, No. 3, pp. 326 - 357, 2009
32 Pages Posted: 8 Apr 2011
Date Written: September 6, 2009
E-government has added to the transformation of the public sector worldwide. It has complemented the reforms in the public administration, as well as the necessity for public consultation in policy-making at the beginning of the 21st century. The present study offers both an analytical framework of and empirical evidence on the key aspects of online engagement initiatives in the countries of the European Union. It focuses on top-down opportunities of online civic participation through the ministerial websites of education in the EU27 by providing a classificatory typology meant to assess the development of e-government in connection with initiatives for public engagement, based on two dimensions: interactivity and public outreach. The findings of this research, conducted in May 2009, point towards a trend of increased access to information in education-related policymaking, with 93% of the cases scoring high on this aspect. However, only 32% of the websites analyzed proved successful on the public outreach dimension. A comparison between Western and Eastern Europe e-government web-based applications reveals slightly lower standards for the post-communist countries, with the potential of fast modernization.
Keywords: e-government, online civic participation, European Union, education, interactivity, public outreach
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