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Is	  E-­‐Democracy	  a	  Myth?	  	  Civic	  Par)cipa)on	  and	  Democra)c	  Reform	  Dr	  Julie	  Freeman	  PhD,	  Univers...
Literature	  review	  	  The	  focus	  of	  E-­‐Government	  so	  far	  has	  been	  informaDon	  disseminaDon	  and	  tra...
E-­‐Democracy	  –TheoreDcal	  Framework	  Informa?on	   Consulta?on	   Par?cipa?on	  One	  way	  relaDonship	  where	  gov...
Case	  Studies-­‐	  Government	  led	  E-­‐ParDcipaDon	  Criteria:	  •  The	  use	  of	  ICT	  to	  achieve	  ‘parDcipaDon...
Local	  E-­‐ParDcipaDon:	  Milton	  Keynes	  •  ‘New	  Town’	  in	  England	  and	  is	  54	  Miles	  north	  of	  London	...
 Used	  social	  media	  to	  share	  informaDon	  on	  behalf	  of	  council	  with	  the	  aim	  to	  connect	  with	  t...
NaDonal	  E-­‐ParDcipaDon:	  Iceland	  ConsDtuDonal	  Crowdsourcing	  	  •  PopulaDon	  320,000	  	  •  Internet	  penetra...
NaDonal	  E-­‐ParDcipaDon:	  Iceland	  ConsDtuDonal	  Crowdsourcing	  	  Change	  in	  Culture:	  New	  government	  was	 ...
CharacterisDcs	  of	  e-­‐Democracy-­‐	  what	  does	  it	  look	  like?	  •  E-­‐	  parDcipaDon	  is	  conDnuous,	  open,...
 	  CharacterisDcs	  of	  e-­‐Democracy-­‐	  How	  it	  can	  emerge	  as	  a	  government	  led	  iniDaDve?	  	  •  Civic...
Conclusion	  •  The	  focus	  to	  date	  has	  been	  on	  e-­‐government	  not	  e-­‐democracy	  •  Greater	  focus	  ne...
Julie Freeman: Is e democracy a myth? #CeDEM13
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Julie Freeman: Is e democracy a myth? #CeDEM13

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Julie Freeman: Is e democracy a myth? #CeDEM13

  1. 1. Is  E-­‐Democracy  a  Myth?    Civic  Par)cipa)on  and  Democra)c  Reform  Dr  Julie  Freeman  PhD,  University  of  Canberra,  Australia    Sharna  Quirke  MSc,  Public  Sector  TransformaDon  Consultant,  UK.  
  2. 2. Literature  review    The  focus  of  E-­‐Government  so  far  has  been  informaDon  disseminaDon  and  transacDonal  service  delivery.        Bekkers  and  Homburg  2007:  Digital  democracy  is  a    myth  of  e-­‐government      Norris  2010:  Empirical  survey  based  evidence  that  e-­‐government  does  not  naturally  lead  to  e-­‐democracy        Jimenez,  Mossberger  &Wu  2012:  Governments  have  placed  liNle  emphasis  on  the  development  of  online  pracDces  that  enable  civic  contribuDon  to  impact  decision  making.        Can  government  led  e-­‐parDcipaDon  iniDaDves  have  an  impact  on  democraDc  governance?  Using  two  case  studies  we  explore  the  characterisDcs  of  e-­‐Democracy  both  in  terms  of  what  it  looks  like  and  how  it  can  emerge  as  a  government  led  iniDaDve.        
  3. 3. E-­‐Democracy  –TheoreDcal  Framework  Informa?on   Consulta?on   Par?cipa?on  One  way  relaDonship  where  government  produces  and  distributes  informaDon  to  ciDzens  The  provision  of  informaDon  which  involves  ciDzen  feedback  on  issues  predetermined  by  government  AcDve  involvement  by  ciDzens  in  the  policy  making  process,  in  which  ciDzens  can  propose  policy  opDons  and  share  the  direcDon  of  the  poliDcal  dialogue  In  Promise  and  Problems  of  E-­‐Democracy  (2003)  OrganisaDon  for  Economic  CooperaDon  and  Development  (OECD)  E-­‐Government  InformaDon  TransacDons  E-­‐Engagement  ConsultaDon  E-­‐Democracy  ParDcipaDon  
  4. 4. Case  Studies-­‐  Government  led  E-­‐ParDcipaDon  Criteria:  •  The  use  of  ICT  to  achieve  ‘parDcipaDon’  as  defined  by  OECD  •  Used  a  range  of  ICT  based  techniques  specifically  for  broader  poliDcal  acDon  and  goals  •  Government  led  iniDaDve  •  European  based      Milton  Keynes:  Youth  Engagement  and  Youth  Cabinet        Iceland:  Cons9tu9onal  Crowdsourcing  
  5. 5. Local  E-­‐ParDcipaDon:  Milton  Keynes  •  ‘New  Town’  in  England  and  is  54  Miles  north  of  London  •  PopulaDon  of  approx  250,000  with  22.3%  under  16  years  of  age  •  Less  young  people  at  Youth  Centres  and  outreach  work  increasingly  challenging    •  Youth  Workers  started  to  explore  the  use  of  technology  to  increase  parDcipaDon,  including  what  parDcipaDon  might  look  like  
  6. 6.  Used  social  media  to  share  informaDon  on  behalf  of  council  with  the  aim  to  connect  with  tradiDonally  ‘hard  to  reach  groups’.      Culture  shock:  Shiding  from  informaDon  sharing  to  targeted  engagement  was  seen  predatory      Started  as  informaDon  sharing  and  then  grew  into  e-­‐parDcipaDon.        Acceptance:  Young  people  wanted  a  role  in  the  decision  making,  parDcularly  transport  and  employment  opportuniDes.          Relinquished  Control:  of  the  council  website  allowing  a  page  to  be  re-­‐branded  ‘My  Say  MK’  and  the  content  management  controlled  by  youth  volunteers    Local  E-­‐ParDcipaDon:  Milton  Keynes  
  7. 7. NaDonal  E-­‐ParDcipaDon:  Iceland  ConsDtuDonal  Crowdsourcing    •  PopulaDon  320,000    •  Internet  penetraDon  of  95%  of  households  •  2010  ranked  135  in  the  UN’s  e-­‐parDcipaDon  index  and  jumped  to                rank  26  in  2012  •  Civic  Pressure:  Collapse  of  the  Iceland  banking  sector  lead  to  poliDcal  uncertainty  and  civil  protest  
  8. 8. NaDonal  E-­‐ParDcipaDon:  Iceland  ConsDtuDonal  Crowdsourcing    Change  in  Culture:  New  government  was  formed  which  led  to  consDtuDon  reform,  focussing  on  distribuDon  of  power,  transparency  and  responsibility.          CiDzens  could  join  discussions,  or  convey  their  thoughts  through  Facebook,  TwiNer  and  Blogging.  Members  of  the  ConsDtuDonal  Council  would  post  videos  on  YouTube  and  photos  on  Flickr.      Power  shid:  Despite  a  referendum  with      64.2%  voDng  in  favour.  Parliament  did      not  pass  the  bill.    
  9. 9. CharacterisDcs  of  e-­‐Democracy-­‐  what  does  it  look  like?  •  E-­‐  parDcipaDon  is  conDnuous,  open,  transparent  engagement  between  mulDple  individuals  and  their  government.    •  It  is  triangular  not  bilateral  engagement  using  qualitaDve  dialogue  to  achieve  specific  aims  and  objecDves.  •  It  is  Important  to  combine  the  online  with  off  line  methods  of  engagement  
  10. 10.    CharacterisDcs  of  e-­‐Democracy-­‐  How  it  can  emerge  as  a  government  led  iniDaDve?    •  Civic  pressure      •  Government  culture  change  is  needed  –  acknowledging  the  change  in  civic  behaviour    –  accepDng  the  e-­‐parDcipaDon  acDvity    •  Power  shid  must  be  allowed:  The  elected  officials  need  to  relinquish  a  degree  of  control    LimitaDons:        Accountability    NegaDve  ramificaDons  of  poor  decisions    
  11. 11. Conclusion  •  The  focus  to  date  has  been  on  e-­‐government  not  e-­‐democracy  •  Greater  focus  needs  to  be  given  on  understanding  e-­‐parDcipaDon  and  its  potenDal  to  contribute  to  democraDc  reform    •  E-­‐democracy  is  not  a  myth-­‐  but  the  case  studies  show  three  common  characterisDcs  which  are  needed  •  A  gradual  democraDc  shid  has  begun    Thank  you.    Sharna  Quirke  MSc  Email:  sharna.quirke@gmail.com  TwiNer:  sharnaquirke  

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