Disjointed Innovation: The Political Economy of Digitally Mediated Institutional Reform
50 Pages Posted: 26 Aug 2011
Date Written: August 24, 2011
Current attention to social media and governance has focused on the enactment of networked communication and information use by and for governance with particular attention to the role of civil society. This paper argues that such a focus, while illuminating a possibly utopian perspective on political participation, often obscures even recent government reforms, existing institutional arrangements, and the myriad processes by which knowledge is translated to action in political settings. Drawing from and extending core perspectives within historical institutionalism, the paper examines three streams of theory and research: temporal models, coordination models, and the political effects of public policies where policies themselves may be conceptualized as institutions. Illustrations are drawn from American and European politics and used to ground as well as to probe models. The objective of the paper is a conceptualization that rebalances attention between agency and structure and that simultaneously considers the political past as well as the future.
Keywords: institutions, institutional change, networked governance, e-government, public management, public administration
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