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“South Korea is aiming at ubiquitous government” - Interview of Marc Holzer
Source: World egov Forum, http://wegf.org/2010/09/south-korea-seoul-egovernance-egovernment-wegf/
Source Date: Monday, September 06, 2010
Focus: ICT for MDGs
Country: Republic of Korea
Created: Sep 16, 2010

The press release of the survey emphasizes the “well-organized and systematic opportunities to submit ideas and suggestions” given by Seoul. Could describe this type of participation tools?

One example of Seoul municipality’s efforts toward enhancing online citizen participation is the Seoul’s Cyber Policy Forum. The Forum aims to provide the citizens of Seoul, the opportunities to understand policy issues and to facilitate discussions. The website of Seoul strongly encourages citizen participation in government decision-making and is very user-friendly, along with targeted audience links available on each page. The website is offered in more than one language – in Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese, French and Spanish. The website of Seoul also provides a privacy policy that is accessible on every page that accepts data and addresses the use of cookies or web beacons to track users. Further, Seoul implemented the OPEN system in the late 90′s and it has been a model for other cities (Brisbane, Sao Paolo) around the world.

More generally, about e-government in the Republic of Korea: how do you analyze the supremacy of this country and Seoul on the world of e-government?

Seoul is committed to transform its administration through e-government and ultimately leading to a status of u-government (ubiquitous government).

Policy tasks to realize u-Government

• Establishment of desirable future government and city development methodologies for ubiquitous society
• Ex-ante improvement and readiness of law & regulation for future society uncertainty
• Private information protection and system stability

In talking with Korean students at Rutgers, it seems as if the Republic invests heavily in ICT development and strategically plans for the future. I do not know if that is the case in other countries or cities but the concerted effort by their government helps them sustain superior e-government standing.

Same question about other areas: Northern American cities are in average only in fourth position, whereas the United States and Canada stand in second and third position of United Nations E-Government Survey 2010. How do you explain these differences?

The differences in scores between the U.S., Canada and the cities in each country do not seem to be large. One thing that may explain the variation I’ve seen in our research is that cities that have a strong e-gov platform and score highly on our performance index do not necessarily impact or translate into a similarly strong platform at the state level. For example, while Portland, Oregon and Los Angeles, Ca may score highly in the U.S. City Report, it does not mean that the states of Oregon and California, respectively, also score highly.

Further information:

Read the Rutgers global e-governance survey below:

Digital Governance Municipalities Worldwide 2009

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