Governments and Cloud Computing: Roles, Approaches, and Policy Considerations

43 Pages Posted: 18 Mar 2014

See all articles by Urs Gasser

Urs Gasser

Harvard University - Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society

David O'Brien

Harvard University - Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society

Date Written: March 17, 2014

Abstract

Governments from Bogota to Beijing are engaging with emerging cloud computing technologies and its industry in a variety of overlapping contexts. Based on a review of a representative number of advanced cloud computing strategies developed by governments from around the world, including the United States, United Kingdom, the European Union, and Japan, we observed that these governments – mostly implicitly – have taken on several different “roles” with respect to their approaches to cloud computing. In particular, we identify six distinguishable but overlapping roles assumed by governments: users, regulators, coordinators, promoters, researchers, and service providers. In this paper, we describe and discuss each of these roles in detail using examples from our review of cloud strategies, and share high-level observations about the roles as well as the contexts in which they arise. The paper concludes with a set of considerations for policymakers to take into account when developing approaches to the rapidly evolving cloud computing technologies and industry.

Suggested Citation

Gasser, Urs and O'Brien, David, Governments and Cloud Computing: Roles, Approaches, and Policy Considerations (March 17, 2014). Berkman Center Research Publication No. 2014-6. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2410270 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2410270

Urs Gasser (Contact Author)

Harvard University - Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society ( email )

Harvard Law School
23 Everett, 2nd Floor
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

HOME PAGE: https://cyber.harvard.edu/people/ugasser

David O'Brien

Harvard University - Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society ( email )

Harvard Law School
23 Everett, 2nd Floor
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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