This research seeks to explore the potential of ontologies for reorganizing e‐document management in public administration with the aim of supporting administration in organizing cross‐organizational document and information management.
Since ontologies are suitable for organizing metadata for annotation of informational resources, the research question is: How can public administrations make use of ontologies for organizing and improving their e‐document management? Findings, based on an action research project in the state administration of Schleswig‐Holstein (Germany).
The research findings indicate that structuring documents and information through ontologies requires a socio‐technical infrastructure consisting of a number of regularities, services and support on the level of organization as well as information technology.
Since the case of Schleswig‐Holstein is typical for governments trying to enter the information age without having the power and resources to be on the leading edge, the recommendations based on this research may support the strategy development and solution finding in other administrations as well.
A rather small government (such as that of Schleswig‐Holstein) must be aware of its strategic goals and step ahead carefully in order to avoid the risks of misinvestment while reorganizing its e‐document management.
The paper systematically addresses the question “How can public administration make use of ontologies for organizing and improving their e‐document management?”.
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