5 Questions To Ask About Digital Government

Today, we use Information and Communications Technology (ICT) in every aspect of our lives and in the future this use will only increase. Governments around the world are slowly but surely realizing this and are trying to take advantage of ICT. The use of ICT by governments to provide efficient and effective services at the Federal, State and Local levels is called Digital Government (or Electronic Government or e-gov). Broadly speaking, Digital Government revolves around improving interactions between Government-to-Government (G2G), Government-to-Business (G2B), Government-to-Citizen (G2C) and Government-to-Employee (G2E).

Interactions between Government-to-Government (G2G) can include but not limited to:

  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies with Federal Department(s)/Agencies
  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies with State Department(s)/Agencies
  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies with Local Department(s)/Agencies
  • State Department(s)/Agencies with Local Department(s)/Agencies
  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies with Federal Lawmakers
  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies with State Lawmakers
  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies with Local Lawmakers
  • State Department(s)/Agencies with Local Lawmakers
  • Federal Lawmakers with Federal Lawmakers
  • Federal Lawmakers with State Lawmakers
  • Federal Lawmakers with Local Lawmakers
  • State Lawmakers with Local Lawmakers
  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies with Federal Judiciary
  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies with State Judiciary
  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies with Local Judiciary
  • Federal Judiciary with Federal Judiciary
  • Federal Judiciary with State Judiciary
  • Federal Judiciary with Local Judiciary
  • State Judiciary with Local Judiciary
  • Military with Military
  • Military with International Military
  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies with Military
  • State Department(s)/Agencies with Military
  • Local Department(s)/Agencies with Military
  • Intelligence Department(s)/Agencies with Military
  • Intelligence Department(s)/Agencies with International Military
  • Intelligence Department(s)/Agencies with Intelligence Department(s)/Agencies
  • Intelligence Department(s)/Agencies with International Intelligence Department(s)/Agencies
  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies with Intelligence Department(s)/Agencies
  • State Department(s)/Agencies with Intelligence Department(s)/Agencies
  • Local Department(s)/Agecnies with Intelligence Department(s)/Agencies
  • Military with Intelligence Department(s)/Agencies
  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies with International Organizations
  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies with International Governments

Interactions between Government-to-Business (G2B) can include but not limited to:

  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies with Government-Owned Organizations
  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies with For-Profit Organizations
  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies with International For-Profit Organizations
  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies with Non-Profit Organizations
  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies with International Non-Profit Organizations
  • State Department(s)/Agencies with Government-Owned Organizations
  • State Department(s)/Agencies with For-Profit Organizations
  • State Department(s)/Agencies with International For-Profit Organizations
  • State Department(s)/Agencies with Non-Profit Organizations
  • State Department(s)/Agencies with International Non-Profit Organizations
  • Local Department(s)/Agencies with Government-Owned Organizations
  • Local Department(s)/Agencies with For-Profit Organizations
  • Local Department(s)/Agencies with International For-Profit Organizations
  • Local Department(s)/Agencies with Non-Profit Organizations
  • Local Department(s)/Agencies with International Non-Profit Organizations
  • Federal Lawmakers with Government-Owned Organizations
  • Federal Lawmakers with For-Profit Organizations
  • Federal Lawmakers with International For-Profit Organizations
  • Federal Lawmakers with Non-Profit Organizations
  • Federal Lawmakers with International Non-Profit Organizations
  • State Lawmakers with Government-Owned Organizations
  • State Lawmakers with For-Profit Organizations
  • State Lawmakers with International For-Profit Organizations
  • State Lawmakers with Non-Profit Organizations
  • State Lawmakers with International Non-Profit Organizations
  • Local Lawmakers with Government-Owned Organizations
  • Local Lawmakers with For-Profit Organizations
  • Local Lawmakers with International For-Profit Organizations
  • Local Lawmakers with Non-Profit Organizations
  • Local Lawmakers with International Non-Profit Organizations
  • Federal Judiciary with Government-Owned Organizations
  • Federal Judiciary with For-Profit Organizations
  • Federal Judiciary with International For-Profit Organizations
  • Federal Judiciary with Non-Profit Organizations
  • Federal Judiciary with International Non-Profit Organizations
  • State Judiciary with Government-Owned Organizations
  • State Judiciary with For-Profit Organizations
  • State Judiciary with International For-Profit Organizations
  • State Judiciary with Non-Profit Organizations
  • State Judiciary with International Non-Profit Organizations
  • Local Judiciary with Government-Owned Organizations
  • Local Judiciary with For-Profit Organizations
  • Local Judiciary with International For-Profit Organizations
  • Local Judiciary with Non-Profit Organizations
  • Local Judiciary with International Non-Profit Organizations

Interactions between Government-to-Citizens (G2C) can include but not limited to:

  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies with Citizens inside the Country
  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies with Citizens outside the Country
  • State Department(s)/Agencies with Citizens inside the Country
  • State Department(s)/Agencies with Citizens outside the Country
  • Local Department(s)/Agencies with Citizens inside the Country
  • Local Department(s)/Agencies with Citizens outside the Country
  • Federal Lawmakers with Citizens inside the Country
  • Federal Lawmakers with Citizens outside the Country
  • State Lawmakers with Citizens inside the Country
  • Local Lawmakers with Citizens inside the Country
  • Federal Judiciary with Citizens inside the Country
  • Federal Judiciary with Citizens outside the Country
  • State Judiciary with Citizens inside the Country
  • Local Judiciary with Citizens inside the Country
  • Military with Citizens inside the Country
  • Military with Citizens outside the Country
  • Intelligence Department(s)/Agencies with Citizens inside the Country
  • Intelligence Department(s)/Agencies with Citizens outside the Country

Interactions between Government-to-Employee (G2E) can include but not limited to:

  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies improving Business Processes to Empower Government Employees
  • State Department(s)/Agencies improving Business Processes to Empower Government Employees
  • Local Department(s)/Agencies improving Business Processes to Empower Government Employees
  • Federal Department(s)/Agencies improving IT Processes to Empower Government Employees
  • State Department(s)/Agencies improving IT Processes to Empower Government Employees
  • Local Department(s)/Agencies improving IT Processes to Empower Government Employees
  • Federal Lawmakers improving Business Processes to Empower Government Employees
  • State Lawmakers improving Business Processes to Empower Government Employees
  • Local Lawmakers improving Business Processes to Empower Government Employees
  • Federal Lawmakers improving IT Processes to Empower Government Employees
  • State Lawmakers improving IT Processes to Empower Government Employees
  • Local Lawmakers improving IT Processes to Empower Government Employees
  • Federal Judiciary improving Business Processes to Empower Government Employees
  • State Judiciary improving Business Processes to Empower Government Employees
  • Local Judiciary improving Business Processes to Empower Government Employees
  • Federal Judiciary improving IT Processes to Empower Government Employees
  • State Judiciary improving IT Processes to Empower Government Employees
  • Local Judiciary improving IT Processes to Empower Government Employees
  • Military improving Business Processes to Empower Military Employees
  • Military improving IT Processes to Empower Military Employees
  • Intelligence Department(s)/Agencies improving Business Processes to Empower Employees
  • Intelligence Department(s)/Agencies improving IT Processes to Empower Employees

From the above non-exhaustive list, we can see that governments need ICT more than ever to enhance communications and improve operations. This, in turn, means that becoming a Digital Government is not only a nice-to-have but a must-have. The importance of ICT to domestic government operations and international cooperation is such that in 2001 the United Nations (UN) started administering surveys about a country’s e-gov capabilities and then ranking each country through the United Nation’s E-Government Development Index (EGDI). The following chart shows the rankings of the top 20 countries from 2001 to 2018:

As we notice from the above chart, most of the top 20 countries that lead in the Digital Government are democracies in developed nations. Perhaps there are lessons to be learned here for developing and under-developed countries. We need to be cognizant that Digital Government:

  1. Is about keeping the Citizen at the center to create delightful customer experiences
  2. Is about continuous improvement mindset through ICT
  3. Is not about a one-time activity/project
  4. Is not about Citizens who are only online

Keeping all these in mind, in order to start and continue to create societies of the future, countries around the world need to ask the following questions:

Today Tomorrow
Who is your direct and indirect customer?Who should be your direct and indirect customer?
What government services are being provided that are digitized?What government services should be digitized?
Where can citizens get government services? online vs. offlineWhere should citizens get government services? online vs. offline
When are government services considered inefficient?When should government services be considered inefficient?
Why Digital Government is important for your country?Why Digital Government should be important for your country?

Author: Khan

Speaker | Advisor | Blogger