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Emerging forms of inter-organizational and cross-sector collaborations in e-government initiatives: Implications for participative development of information systems

Sofie Pilemalm (Department of Management and Engineering, Linköping University, Linköping, Sweden)
Ida Lindgren (Department of Management and Engineering, Linköping University, Linköping, Sweden)
Elina Ramsell (Department of Management and Engineering, Linköping University, Linköping, Sweden)

Transforming Government: People, Process and Policy

ISSN: 1750-6166

Article publication date: 17 October 2016

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Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to explore recent public sector trends, inter-organizational and cross-sector collaborations, and analyzes these in terms of implications for participative development of information systems (IS). These trends are understood as being part of emerging forms of e-government. Initial suggestions for how to develop IS in the new contexts are provided.

Design/methodology/approach

Three cases involving the trends described above, taking place in the Swedish emergency response system, are studied and used as basis for identified participative IS development challenges and suggested adaptation needs. Data collection involves semi-structured interviews, focus groups and future workshops.

Findings

The identified challenges concern balancing ideological versus practical needs, lack of resources, lack of know-how and design techniques and tool challenges. Some practical implications for participative IS development include more extensive focus on stakeholder and legal analysis, need for interdisciplinary design teams, merging of task and needs analysis for yet-undefined user tasks and using on-line alternatives for interacting with users.

Research implications/limitations

The study is exploratory where the three cases are in different, but at the same time interrelated, collaboration contexts. The identified implications and challenges provide proposals that in future research can be applied, formalized and integrated when developing practically feasible participative IS development approaches.

Originality/value

It is argued that the results point toward a current emerging form of e-government initiatives directed toward certain demarcated groups of citizens actually carrying out certain tasks for their co-citizens and society rather than the broad masses, having far-reaching practical implications and complicating the issue of IS development.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

This study was financed by the Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency and by SOS Alarm.

Citation

Pilemalm, S., Lindgren, I. and Ramsell, E. (2016), "Emerging forms of inter-organizational and cross-sector collaborations in e-government initiatives: Implications for participative development of information systems", Transforming Government: People, Process and Policy, Vol. 10 No. 4, pp. 605-636. https://doi.org/10.1108/TG-12-2015-0055

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2016, Emerald Group Publishing Limited