What Is E-Government
Governments are employing information technology to efficiently engage and inform stakeholders.
E-government has been a buzzword in the information technology and computer engineering fields for years, but what is it? Short for electronic government, it’s an umbrella term referring to government use of information and computer technology to run more smoothly.
According to the Organization of American States, e-government applies information and communication technologies “to government functions and procedures with the purpose of increasing efficiency, transparency, and citizen participation.”1 Generally speaking, e-government takes the form of one of three primary types of interactions:2
- Government-to-government, or G2G
Government-to-government exchanges occur within a government, for example, between branches or agencies, or within them. G2G e-government also takes place between levels of government, like national, state, or provincial and local governments. Often, G2G interactions encompass data sharing.3
- Government-to-business, or G2B
Government-to-business relations are typically financial or transactional in nature, and may include payments and purchases for goods and services.3
- Government-to-citizen, or G2C
Government-to-citizen e-government strives to facilitate citizen interactions with government entities. This might include simplifying access to government or public services, enabling citizens to conduct transactions online instead of in person, or even empowering public participation in government policies or processes.3
The United Nations ranks the efficacy of e-government programs around the world in its biennial U.N. E-Government Survey. Using a metric called the EGDI, or E-Government Development Index, the survey compares the efficacy of nations and their e-government efforts. The index “measures countries’ use of information and communications technologies to deliver public services” while “captur[ing] the scope and quality of online services, status of telecommunication infrastructure, and existing human capacity.”4
In the U.N.’s most recent survey, released in 2018, Denmark scored the highest EGDI internationally, followed by Australia and the Republic of Korea. The United States was ranked 11th, well within the top tier of the 193 nations studied. Regionally, European nations received the best e-government grades, followed by the Americas and Asia in a virtual tie. African and Oceanic regions showed great e-government disparity between their highest- and lowest-scoring countries. The survey noted a positive correlation between national income level and e-government ranking.4
For the first time, the 2018 E-Government Survey also examined e-government efficacy at the local level. Employing a Local Online Services Index, LOSI, to compare localities, the U.N. studied 40 international pilot cities in the survey. Moscow tallied the highest total LOSI score, with Cape Town, South Africa, and Tallinn, Estonia, rounding out the top three.5
As localities, states, and nations expand their online efforts, e-government jobs will become increasingly vital. Staying abreast of new technologies, software, social media, and mobile and web applications is just the beginning.6 Today and tomorrow’s e-government careers include data analysts, software developers, cybersecurity jobs, database administrators, computer programmers, software engineers, and information security analysts.
Walden University, an accredited institution, offers a number of information technology degree programs online—including a BS in Information Technology—where students can build skills in areas such as data analytics, cyber safety, and computer programming. Expand your career options and earn your degree using a convenient, flexible learning platform that fits your busy life.
5Source: publicadministration.un.org/egovkb/Portals/egovkb/Documents/un/2018-Survey/E-Government Survey 2018_FINAL_PRINT.pdf
Walden University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission, www.hlcommission.org.