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Norris E Government 2020 Essay

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University of Maryland, Baltimore County

E-Government 2020: Plus ga change,
plus c'est la meme chose

Part lll: Public

0rganizations of
the Future




is a professor and cha


man of the Department of Pub c P0 cy at

the llnive6ity 0f [4ary and,


t more foun

ty, and a specialist in urban af{a]tr,




and nformation technology

qovernmef t (includirg e-government).

N s works have been published

in many of

the major journals n these f elds.

E-mail: [email protected]

or about the past 15 years, governmenrs across
th.. globe have been delirrering informarion and
services, providing rransactions, and enabling
interactions berween the governed and their govern-


ments electronically. For the mosr parr, they do so
through o{ilcial governmental sires on the World
\7ide Web. This has become known as electronic
governm€nt, or e-government. Today, e-government is

Although no single definition exists, a consensus of
sorts has developed around the basic understanding of
e-government as the prouision of gouernmental information and seruices elecnonically 24 hours per c{ay, 7 days per week (see, e.g., Holden, Norris, and Fletcher
2003). Some view e-government more broadly and
ascribe normative elements to it (e.g., governmental

reform). Yet the foregoing definition caprures the descriptive essence of e-governmgnl-1h6 availability of governmental information and services by electronic
means (usually the Web), without restricrion as to
place and time.
Some conflate e-government with its antecedent,

citizens, businesses, and governments, respectively),
meaning the provision of information and services
primarily to external stakeholders. Although governments may have multiple morives when implementing e-government, the motive that leads all is electronic
access (online versus in line) by external parries ro
governmental information and services.

When it first came on the scene, e,government was
cause for great opt...

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