chapter  3
33 Pages

Different theories and perspectives on digital government

ByMiriam Lips

This chapter explores and discusses nine different theoretical and analytical perspectives that are commonly used as ways of ‘seeing’ digital government. Each of these lenses is putting different emphasis on what can be seen and, therefore, commonly narrowing our views on digital government as a socio-technical phenomenon by not seeing other aspects of that same phenomenon. The nine dominant perspectives discussed in this chapter are: 1) a technology perspective; 2) a data and information perspective; 3) a revolutionary change vs. evolutionary change perspective; 4) a private sector perspective; 5) a transformational perspective; 6) an institutional perspective; 7) a networked governance perspective; 8) a surveillance state perspective; and 9) a good governance perspective. As none of these perspectives is sufficient to observe the full breadth and depth of digital government phenomena, an alternative perspective of complex public management is proposed.