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En legitim (elektronisk) förvaltning?: Om IT-utveckling i kommunal förvaltning
Linköping University, Department of Management and Engineering, Political Science. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.
2013 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [sv]

Den här avhandlingen undersöker utvecklingen av en elektronisk förvaltning ur ett legitimitetsperspektiv. Det övergripande syftet är att analysera den reella och potentiella förändring som e-förvaltning innebär för den offentliga förvaltningens legitimitetsgrunder, både i form av hur e-förvaltning har formulerats som idé, och hur det konkret har gått till när e-förvaltning har implementerats i praktiken. Avhandlingen består av fem artiklar som undersöker olika aspekter av syftet, från idéerna bakom e-förvaltning på internationell nivå, till implementeringsprocessen på lokal nivå. Den övergripande analysen använder sig av så kallad pragmatisk institutionalism, samt perspektiv på hur legitimitet skapas och upprättshålls i förvaltningen. En fallstudie av en svensk kommun utgör det huvudsakliga empiriska materialet. Detta material kompletteras med en mindre studie av ytterligare en svensk kommun, samt dokumentstudier av den Europeiska Unionens policy för e-förvaltning. Avhandlingen lyfter fram fyra huvudsakliga slutsatser: (1) e-förvaltningsreformer bidrar till skapandet av en ny praxis, där den praktiska utvecklingen och tillämpningen av IT blir ett allt viktigare inslag i den studerade kommunens organisering och serviceutövning, (2) detta bidrar till en omorganisering av aktörsroller- och förhållanden. Ledande tjänstemän i kommunen övertar den strategiska styrningen av utvecklingsprocessen från lokala politiker, medan kommunens närbyråkrater kringgås genom att medborgaren förväntas ta ett större eget ansvar för interaktionen med förvaltningen, (3) legitimitetsgrunder såsom brukarinflytande och kundanpassning placeras därmed i förgrunden medan den politiska styrningen och bedömningen hamnar i bakgrunden, (4) dessa förändringar tyder på allt starkare inslag av en gör-detsjälv-logik, där legitimitet i genomförandeprocesser främst grundar sig i individens möjlighet till självbetjäning och självförvaltning via elektroniska kanaler.

Abstract [en]

This thesis explores the development of an electronic government from a legitimacy perspective. The overarching aim is to analyse the actual and potential processes of change and impacts of e-government on bases of legitimacy within public administration – both with regards to how the ideas behind e-government have been formulated as well as how e-government in practise has been realised. The thesis consists of five articles that examine different aspects of the overarching aim; from the ideas behind e-government on an international level, to the practical implementation process in local government. The overarching analysis uses an institutional perspective and perspectives on the creation and maintenance of legitimacy in public administration. An in-depth case study of a Swedish municipality provides the main empirical material for the analysis. In turn, the material is supplemented with a smaller case study of another Swedish municipality, as well as document studies of the e-government policy of the European Union. The analysis arrives at four overarching conclusions: (1) egovernment reforms contribute to new practises, in which the development and application of IT is becoming increasingly central for the local organisation and the provision of public services, (2) this contributes to a reorganisation of actor roles and relationships. Leading public officials shoulder the strategic steering usually confined to local politicians, whilst street-level bureaucrats are circumvented by citizens since citizens are expected to shoulder greater individual responsibility in their interaction with administrations, (3) in turn, certain bases for legitimacy are placed in the foreground, in particular user influence and customer adaptation, whilst political steering and evaluation are downplayed, (4) these developments point at the emergence of a do-it-yourself-logic, in which legitimacy is mainly based on creating sufficient preconditions for individual selfservices and self-government through the electronic channels of administrations.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2013. , 80 p.
Series
Linköping Studies in Arts and Science, ISSN 0282-9800 ; 589
Keyword [en]
E-government, public administration, legitimacy, local government, municipality, public e-services, institutionalism
Keyword [sv]
E-förvaltning, offentlig förvaltning, legitimitet, kommuner, e-tjänster, organisering, pragmatisk institutionalism
National Category
Political Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-98291DOI: 10.3384/diss.diva-98291ISBN: 978-91-7519-517-9 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-98291DiVA: diva2:654083
Public defence
2013-11-07, Planck, Fysikhuset, Campus Valla, Linköpings universitet, Linköping, 13:15 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2013-10-07 Created: 2013-10-07 Last updated: 2013-10-07Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Electronic services in the public sector: A conceptual framework
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Electronic services in the public sector: A conceptual framework
2013 (English)In: Government Information Quarterly, ISSN 0740-624X, E-ISSN 1872-9517, Vol. 30, no 2, 163-172 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Electronic services provided by governmental organizations, here referred to as public e-services, are frequently discussed in the e-government literature. There is, however, little consensus on the meaning of the concepts used to describe and discuss these e-services, and hence, the literature is full of synonymous terms and concepts. This paper is conceptual and presents efforts to understand e-services in the public sector domain by unpacking the public e-service concept into three dimensions; as being (1) a service, (2) electronic, and (3) public (as contrasted to being private). Based on a hermeneutic analysis, these dimensions are discussed in a number of combinations, illustrating that a multi-dimensional take on public e-services must be adopted in order to capture the complexity of governmentally supplied e-services and contribute to theory development, as well as practical utility.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2013
Keyword
e-Government, e-Services, Public sector organizations, Public services, Information systems
National Category
Information Systems, Social aspects Public Administration Studies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-89664 (URN)10.1016/j.giq.2012.10.005 (DOI)000316974200005 ()
Available from: 2013-02-28 Created: 2013-02-28 Last updated: 2017-12-06
2. Contemporary Ideas in the Framing of a European Policy for E-government
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Contemporary Ideas in the Framing of a European Policy for E-government
2013 (English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The implementation of an EU-wide policy for e-government is emerging as a central reform in the transformation of national public administrations. As an increasingly important actor in the field, the European Commission thereby has the possibility to shape the role and content of European public administrations. This calls for the need to scrutinize the ideas and intent behind the EU e-government policy: what views on the role of public administration do these ideas convey? The analysis shows that e-government is increasingly being viewed as an issue of enhancing service production and effective output, rather than rule of law or democratic deliberation, that is, the process- or input-side of governments. This refinement of the policy field might prove problematic for wider processes of legitimacy building in the multi-functional and disperse public administrations of EU member states.

Keyword
EU, e-government, public e-services, ideas, legitimacy, public administration
National Category
Political Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-98289 (URN)
Available from: 2013-10-07 Created: 2013-10-07 Last updated: 2013-10-07Bibliographically approved
3. Local democratic values and e-government: barrier or promoter?: A case study of a multicultural Swedish municipality
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Local democratic values and e-government: barrier or promoter?: A case study of a multicultural Swedish municipality
2013 (English)In: Journal of Community Informatics, ISSN 1712-4441, E-ISSN 1712-4441, Vol. 9, no 1Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The aim of this article is to understand the significance of local democratic core values for the introduction of e-government reforms (public e-services) in a multicultural Swedish municipality with a strong tradition of developing democratic processes and responsiveness to citizen needs. We conclude that the democratic core values in the municipality have acted both as promoter and facilitator of public e-services. Despite the strong economic rationale of e-services, the local democratic values prevail and have advocated e-service developments. This illustrates how locally defined values have a fundamental role in legitimizing and defining the purpose of e-services in the community where they are implemented. However, we also conclude that public e-services, in their present form, could lead to a hollowing out of the local democratic values.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Journal of Community Informatics, 2013
Keyword
E-Government; Public E-Services; ICT; Public Organization; Municipality; Democratic Values; One-Stop Government Offices
National Category
Public Administration Studies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-89663 (URN)
Available from: 2013-02-28 Created: 2013-02-28 Last updated: 2017-12-06Bibliographically approved
4. Politikens betydelse för e-förvaltning: Om lokala IT-projekt och det demokratiska ansvarsutkrävandet
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Politikens betydelse för e-förvaltning: Om lokala IT-projekt och det demokratiska ansvarsutkrävandet
2013 (Swedish)In: Offentlig Förvaltning. Scandinavian Journal of Public Administration, ISSN 2000-8058, E-ISSN 2001-3310, Vol. 17, no 2, 103-125 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [sv]

IT-projekt, med upprättandet av elektronisk förvaltning (e-förvaltning) som mål, intar en central plats i kommunernas förändringsarbete. Eftersom IT-projekt utgör en väsentlig utgiftspost och den slutgiltiga utformningen e-förvaltningen med stor sannolikhet påverkar medborgarnas förtroende för det offentliga, finns anledning att uppmärksamma vilken roll politiker har i denna utveckling. Artikelns syfte är därför att analysera kommunpolitikers roll i och betydelse för projektorganiseringen av e-förvaltning, samt diskutera vilka demokratiska implikationer deras deltagande eller icke-deltagande kan få. Resultaten visar att politikernas roller har varierat, men att ökat politisk deltagande skulle kunna ha betydelse för projektorganiseringen, särskilt för att skapa en långsiktig och mer sammanhängande utveckling. Artikelns slutsatser visar särskilt på betydelsen av politisk styrning, där aspekter som den politiska visionen, beslutslegitimiteten och beslutsmakten har relevans för utvecklingen av IT-projekt, samt mer långsiktigt, även för den offentliga förvaltningen. Detta gäller framför allt det demokratiska ansvarsutkrävandet. Avsaknaden av politisk styrning riskerar urholka övriga dimensioner av politikerrollen, som representation och beslutsfattande, vilket kan försvaga den demokratiska legitimiteten.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Göteborgs universitet, 2013
Keyword
IT, projekt, e-förvaltning, politiker, kommun.
National Category
Public Administration Studies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-89662 (URN)
Available from: 2013-02-28 Created: 2013-02-28 Last updated: 2017-12-06
5. More E-government – Less Street-Level Bureaucracy?: On Legitimacy and the Human Side of Public Administration
Open this publication in new window or tab >>More E-government – Less Street-Level Bureaucracy?: On Legitimacy and the Human Side of Public Administration
2014 (English)In: Journal of Information Technology & Politics, ISSN 1933-1681, no 3, 291-308 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

To explain how legitimacy is maintained, scholars increasingly argue that more attention must be paid to how citizens experience their encounters with public officials. At the same time, the introduction of egovernment is challenging the role of street-level bureaucrats as building blocks of legitimacy. Citizens are increasingly expected to deal with public organizations through impersonal computer screens. We ask whether greater elements of e-government may affect street-level bureaucrats and their ability to build legitimacy of the political system. Our answers are based on a case study of a Swedish municipality which was a pioneer in developing a strong position of street-level bureaucrats in the 1980s, and later also a pioneer in implementing ambitious e-government-reforms. We show that e-government is, by key actors, increasingly regarded as the central contact channel. While this improves transparency and availability, responsive listening and situational adaptation are not easily translated to electronic channels. Certain practical preconditions for legitimacybuilding, inherent to the street-level bureaucratic role, are therefore challenged.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Taylor & Francis, 2014
Keyword
E-government, street-level bureaucrats, legitimacy, welfare state, local government
National Category
Political Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-98290 (URN)10.1080/19331681.2014.908155 (DOI)
Note

The previous status of this publication was Manuscript.

Available from: 2013-10-07 Created: 2013-10-07 Last updated: 2017-12-06Bibliographically approved

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