Handbook of Innovation in Public Services
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Handbook of Innovation in Public Services

Edited by Stephen P. Osborne and Louise Brown

Leading researchers from across the globe review the state of the art in research on innovation in public services, providing an overview of key issues from a multi-disciplinary perspective. Topics explored include: context for innovation in public services and public service reform; managerial change challenges; ICT and e-government; and collaboration and networks. The theory is underpinned by seven wide-ranging case studies of innovation in practice.
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Chapter 17: E-government and innovation: the socio-political shaping of ICT as a source of innovation

Victor Bekkers


‘My Administration is committed to creating an unprecedented level of openness in Government. We will work together to ensure the public trust and establish a system of transparency, public participation, and collaboration. Openness will strengthen our democracy and promote efficiency and effectiveness in Government.’ These were the opening lines of the statement of President Obama of the United States when he launched his Open Government Initiative on 21 January 2009. In his view information and communication technology (ICT) had to play an important role to innovate government in this way. ICT is considered as a major source of innovation. In this chapter I analyse the innovation potential of e-government for the modernization of public administration and assess the kind of innovations that e-government has brought to the organization and functioning of public administration. E-government can be described as the use of ICT to design new or redesign existing information, communication and transaction relationships between governments and citizens, companies and non-governmental organizations as well as between different government organizations and layers in order to achieve specific goals.

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