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  • 1.
    Grönlund, Åke
    et al.
    Örebro University, Swedish Business School at Örebro University.
    Lim, Nena
    Larsson, Hannu
    Örebro University, Swedish Business School at Örebro University.
    Effective use of assistive technologies for inclusive education in developing countries: issues and challenges from two case studies2010In: ijEDict - International Journal of Education and Development using Information and Communication Technology, ISSN 1814-0556, E-ISSN 1814-0556, Vol. 6, no 4, p. 5-26Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Developing countries face many obstacles in the process of implementing inclusive education (IE). Effective use of assistive technologies (AT) can help governments in developing countries achieve inclusive education by helping children with disabilities in schools. Despite the importance and positive impact of AT, prior research on the use of AT in inclusive education especially in developing countries is limited. To fill the research gap in this area, this paper investigates the research question of, How can AT be effectively used for IE in developing countries? To address this question, we conducted an in-depth case study of two developing countries, Bangladesh and Tanzania, and thoroughly reviewed existing IE projects around the world and other relevant literature. Three experts in the field and 18 informants of the two selected countries were interviewed in person, by phone or by email. The analysis of findings from interviews and literature review shows that obstacles to effective use of AT for IE come from three different levels – school, national, and network. Because AT is only part of the equation for a country to achieve IE, a high level national perspective is required and other related factors also need to be considered. We recommend governments in developing countries adopt a systematic approach in tackling obstacles at each level and pay attention to five management challenges: establishment and maintenance of professional networks: identification and maintenance of knowle ge and expertise; funding management; coordination among ministries, and implementation, maintenance, and monitoring of a national program. Overall, governments are suggested to adopt a “network” approach that includes a constructive view of development drawing on incentives-based cooperation from all stakeholders. The results of this research shed light on the status quo of the use of AT for inclusive education in developing countries and provide useful guidance to parties who are interested in using assistive technologies to achieve inclusive education.

  • 2.
    Hellberg, Ann-Sofie
    et al.
    Örebro University, Swedish Business School at Örebro University.
    Karlsson, MartinÖrebro University, School of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences.Larsson, HannuÖrebro University, Swedish Business School at Örebro University.Lundberg, ErikÖrebro University, School of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences.Persson, MonikaÖrebro University, School of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences.
    Perspektiv på offentlig verksamhet i utveckling: tolv kapitel om demokrati, styrning och effektivitet2011Collection (editor) (Other academic)
    Abstract [sv]

    Perspektiv på offentlig verksamhet i utveckling - Tolv kapitel om demokrati, styrning och effektivitet samlar texter från doktorander och forskare knutna till Forskarskolan Offentlig verksamhet i utveckling (FOVU) vid Örebro Universitet. Antologin erbjuder en mångdisciplinär och omfångsrik behandling av en rad viktiga utmaningar för dagens offentlig verksamhet. I boken behandlas ämnen som korruption, jämställdhet, trygghet, medborgardialog, sjukskrivning och högerextremism. Målsättningen med boken är att skapa en bro mellan inomvetenskapliga debatter, offentlig praktik och politik. Här erbjuds kortare texter som på ett överskådligt sätt angriper praktikrelevanta ämnen utan att göra avkall på den vetenskapliga kvaliteten. Vissa texter erbjuder forskningsöversikter och reder ut oklarheter i teoretiska debatter, medan andra presenterar resultat av empirisk forskning.

  • 3.
    Larsson, Hannu
    Örebro University, Swedish Business School at Örebro University.
    Ambiguities in the early stages of public sector enterprise architecture implementation: outlining complexities of interoperability2011In: Electronic government / [ed] Marijn Janssen, Hans J. Scholl, Maria A. Wimmer, Yao-Hua Tan, Springer Berlin/Heidelberg, 2011, p. 367-377Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In recent years the development of eGovernment has increasingly gone from service provision to striving for an interoperable public sector, with Enterprise Architectures being an increasingly popular approach. However, a central issue is the coordination of work, due to differing perceptions among involved actors. This paper provides a deepened understanding of this by addressing the question of how differing interpretations of interoperability benefits affect the coordination in the early stages of implementing a public sector Enterprise Architecture. As a case-study, the interoperability efforts in Swedish eHealth are examined by interviews with key-actors. The theoretical framework is a maturity model with five levels of interoperability issues and benefits. The findings highlight the need to clarify decision-making roles, ambiguities concerning jurisdictions between authorities and that differing perceptions of IT-infrastructure is connected to overall goals. The paper also suggests a re-conceptualization of eGovernment maturity by moving away from sequential models.

  • 4.
    Larsson, Hannu
    Örebro University, Swedish Business School at Örebro University.
    Evolving structure in the implementation of healthcare information systems: an actor-network analysis2011In: Electronic Journal of e-Government, ISSN 1479-439X, E-ISSN 1479-439X, Vol. 9, no 1, p. 30-40Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Public sector ICT use is now moving towards integration of services and processes across departments, for instance in the healthcare sector. This is a challenging issue as it involves distributed decision making, often across both public and private organizations, which implies a multitude of issues. Enterprise Architectures (EA) aim at providing a common framework that includes data, resources and processes, through which all aspects of the enterprise can be directed towards a common goal in an efficient manner. It as been argued that architectures should be perceived as evolving (rather then as carefully planned roadmaps), although more research on how EA evolves is needed. This paper addresses the general question of, how does an EA evolve during implementation? A case study is used to illustrate how an EA evolves throughout the process of implementation. The case is the implementation of a national patient record system in the decentralized Swedish healthcare system. The project is part of a larger effort to implement an EA in the healthcare sector aimed at further integrating the whole sector.  Data is collected by means of observations, interviews and document analysis. Using an Actor-Network Theory perspective, this paper presents four episodes during which an EA evolves through interactions. In this way the paper contributes with a deepened understanding of how EA evolves by arguing that EA programs should be seen as something that needs to be planned with regard to that it will, and should, evolve in order to respond to needs discovered in the process. The contribution is a deepened understanding of how sub-projects co-evolve with a national EA project, thus mutually affecting each other. This should not be perceived as something unequivocally negative as this might also be strategic, and leads to evolution of other parts of the EA to suit each other.

  • 5.
    Larsson, Hannu
    Örebro University, Swedish Business School at Örebro University.
    On the road to interoperability: Complexities of public sector enterprise thinking2011Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Increasingly, eGovernment (the use of ICTs in order to achieve better government) is moving its focus from web presence and electronic service provision to striving for an interoperable public sector. Interoperability refers to the ability for information exchange across organizational borders, concerning technology as well as business aspects. Policy for such change has been formulated and implementation is currently taking place in many government sectors. In such programs there is a strong need for coordination with regard to the way in which interoperability is to be implemented. Interoperability work requires coordination, as it is a complex endeavour because of the interrelatedness of information systems, public services, departments and organizations, as well as policies, constraints and regulations. In order to achieve interoperability, architectural approaches are increasingly used in the public sector to try to coordinate interoperability work. One such approach, Enterprise Architecture (EA), is becoming increasingly influential. EA has been defined as an overview of the complete business processes and business systems, both in terms of how they overlap and their interrelatedness. However, previous research show that state-of-the-art EA is seldom fully applied in practice. Previous research has also proposed that information infrastructures and architectures should be seen as evolving dynamically during the implementation process through changing relationships between actors. The implementation of IS architecture for interoperability is thus seen as an evolving process of social production. As the research field is still immature further research on the evolution of public information infrastructures and architectures is needed, as well as how the strategic alignment of handling of goals, and ambiguities in implementation is done.

     

    This thesis hence addresses the challenges of implementing national public sector interoperability as an evolving process by addressing the research question: How is interoperability interpreted and enacted by different actors in public sector implementation?

     

    In order to approach the research question, an interpretive case study is performed. The case studied in this thesis is from the implementation of the Strategy for eHealth in Sweden, where healthcare is mainly publicly funded, and catered for by 20 county councils (who mainly focus on healthcare, and 290 municipalities (who also cater for a great deal of other public services). The case is an example of how interoperability is implemented, from the early stages of outlining a general picture of goals and requirements, to the formulation of a strategy and an architecture. This case is also an example of how EA influences an interoperability program through enterprise thinking.

     

    The research uses an interpretive case study approach influenced by Actor-Network Theory (ANT). ANT is used as a toolbox for telling stories about technology in practice, as emergent in socio-material relations. A number of complementary qualitative methods are used. These include semi-structured interviews, observations and document analysis, with the foremost part of the empirical material being first-hand.

     

    In order to understand interoperability implementation in the public sector I examine the background to eGovernment implementation, by contrasting conceptualizations of eGovernment evolution to contemporary theories of public policy implementation. It is shown that, during the last decade, stage models have been used as tools for describing, predicting and directing the evolution of eGovernment.  The stage model approach has been criticized for presenting a linear development which has little empirical support and delimits the understanding of eGovernment development as a dynamic process. Newer stage models have started to take this criticism into consideration and alternative models on eGovernment have also been developed. Consequently, eGovernment implementation is in this thesis perceived as a process in which technologies, policies and organizations are in a process of mutual shaping, where policymaking and policy implementation are intermingled. Implementing interoperability is hence not a matter of disseminating a policy that is to be implemented in every setting exactly as stated on paper, but a process in which the goals and means of interoperability are constantly being negotiated. Also, EA has been proposed as an approach to treat technology and business in the public sector as interrelated. However, since previous research show that state-of-the-art EA is seldom fully applied in public sector practice, the concept of enterprise thinking is developed in this thesis. Enterprise thinking is intended to be a concept that describes EA as a contemporary zeitgeist which in practice is adopted in varying ways.

     

    The results of the thesis show how interoperability in eHealth was roughly outlined before implementation although still containing conflicts and ambiguities. Central to this thesis is the controversy of defining “the enterprise”, as the health care sector was delimited as one enterprise, which became increasingly problematic during implementation. This to a large extent concerned municipalities, whose business area stretched much wider than just the health care sector, and hence the definition of the enterprise became problematic. Another central aspect was legal obstacles to cooperation, as there was a clash between the values of efficiency and patient privacy as a result of a new law that had been implemented in order to allow for information sharing. The legal grounds for sharing information proved to be problematic, which lead to that several involved actors perceived that a large portion of the patients in health care could not benefit from interoperability as their information could not be shared despite this law. The legal challenges also dampened the enthusiasm for the eHealth program as a whole.

     

     The program had also outlined a technology architecture before implementation. This architecture was however treated in conflicting ways, both as a blueprint (something to be implemented) and a tool for communication (as a way of discussing what was to be implemented). For instance, several municipalities perceived that the planned infrastructure was unsuitable to their business needs (as it did not meet the requirements of other actors in eGovernment), and thus questioned it, using it as a tool for communication rather than a blueprint. Meanwhile, other actors argued that the blueprint had already been decided, and thus needed to be implemented.  The case also shed light on the use of informal networks, outside traditional bureaucracy, as a means to deal with interoperability. Such networks were used in order to align actions and perceptions of a large number of autonomous municipalities. This revealed issues concerning local decision as knowledge of, and resources for, ICT and architectural work was lacking in several municipalities. Also, as the networks lacked formal power no decisions could be taken jointly, but in the end had to be negotiated locally. This made coordinated decision making hard as the processes were lengthy and often lacked clear incentives. Furthermore, ambiguous feedback from national authorities, as well as an overall lack of understanding among local actors, concerning what was legal to do in terms of procurement and information sharing, complicated the situation further. These findings are summarized in four main conclusions;

     

    1. The process of defining which organizations are to be made interoperable, or what is to be considered as “the enterprise”, is a political process which might be brought into question and require re-negotiations throughout implementation, as the drawing of boundaries of “the enterprise” can be filled with conflict.

     

    1. Different perspectives on an enterprise, from different architectural viewpoints, are often described as complementary, and it has previously been shown that different architectural metaphors can be used by different actors during implementation. However, in practice, different use of metaphors for architectures can open up for discussion and conflict. These may not only be different, but may also contradict other actors’ use of metaphors, since different metaphors might clash.

     

    1. Interoperability work can be a novel task for some local governments. Therefore, there is a need for negotiation and to establish forms of formal decision making and informal dissemination because such structures might be lacking. It should be anticipated that implementation might be slow because of a lack of understanding about interoperability programs (particularly in terms of something other than ICT). In addition, there may be few forums for coordinated decision making, or there may be obstructions in the form of prior formal and legal arrangements. 

     

    1. Enterprise thinking is interconnected with Enterprise Architecture as a zeitgeist for interoperability work. It draws upon EA as an ideal, whilst acknowledging that public organizations are influenced by this zeitgeist, although practical conditions might not allow for adoption of an EA approach. Enterprise thinking thus refers to the notion of EA as an ideal, not as a specific way of applying EA.  Enterprise thinking has a process focus on interoperability. ICT, business goals, and work practices are perceived as interconnected, and hence need to be treated from a holistic perspective. How this is approached is, however, dependent upon the context in which it is implemented.

     

    Further research efforts could approach how enterprise thinking affects interoperability work in the long run with a longitudinal approach. Also, as this thesis has shown how the use of different architectural metaphors can clash, further research could focus on the positive and negative effects of negotiations being initiated by such conflict. From a project management perspective the risks and benefits of using smaller projects as “enrolment devices” for interoperability programs, where an architecture cannot be pushed but is voluntary, should be of interest. Furthermore the use of EA as an ideal which cannot be fully followed in several public settings, although might intentionally be used as a guiding light, is interesting for further research.  For instance, it would be of interest to see how the rhetoric of EA may be applied in practice in order to legitimate programs. This is of interest as to examine to which extent the use of such concepts influence actual practice, or if they are only “empty words”. The conceptualization of enterprise thinking proposed in the conclusions of this thesis can be used in further research. Indeed, they could be useful for investigating different approaches, influenced by EA, in different contexts. For instance, it may be of interest to countries that might not share the same institutional characteristics of Sweden, but are influenced by enterprise thinking in different ways. This would be of interest for outlining different practical approaches to enterprise thinking. Also, the further development in Sweden specifically could be of interest, as other sectors are at the time of writing preparing their own interoperability programs, and aim to benefit from the lessons learned in the healthcare sector.

    List of papers
    1. Evolving structure in the implementation of healthcare information systems: an actor-network analysis
    Open this publication in new window or tab >>Evolving structure in the implementation of healthcare information systems: an actor-network analysis
    2011 (English)In: Electronic Journal of e-Government, ISSN 1479-439X, E-ISSN 1479-439X, Vol. 9, no 1, p. 30-40Article in journal (Refereed) Published
    Abstract [en]

    Public sector ICT use is now moving towards integration of services and processes across departments, for instance in the healthcare sector. This is a challenging issue as it involves distributed decision making, often across both public and private organizations, which implies a multitude of issues. Enterprise Architectures (EA) aim at providing a common framework that includes data, resources and processes, through which all aspects of the enterprise can be directed towards a common goal in an efficient manner. It as been argued that architectures should be perceived as evolving (rather then as carefully planned roadmaps), although more research on how EA evolves is needed. This paper addresses the general question of, how does an EA evolve during implementation? A case study is used to illustrate how an EA evolves throughout the process of implementation. The case is the implementation of a national patient record system in the decentralized Swedish healthcare system. The project is part of a larger effort to implement an EA in the healthcare sector aimed at further integrating the whole sector.  Data is collected by means of observations, interviews and document analysis. Using an Actor-Network Theory perspective, this paper presents four episodes during which an EA evolves through interactions. In this way the paper contributes with a deepened understanding of how EA evolves by arguing that EA programs should be seen as something that needs to be planned with regard to that it will, and should, evolve in order to respond to needs discovered in the process. The contribution is a deepened understanding of how sub-projects co-evolve with a national EA project, thus mutually affecting each other. This should not be perceived as something unequivocally negative as this might also be strategic, and leads to evolution of other parts of the EA to suit each other.

    Keywords
    actor-network theory, eGovernment, eHealth, enterprise architecture, evolving structure, implementation
    National Category
    Information Systems
    Research subject
    Informatics
    Identifiers
    urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-20687 (URN)
    Projects
    Avhandlingen
    Available from: 2012-01-02 Created: 2012-01-02 Last updated: 2018-01-12Bibliographically approved
    2. Ambiguities in the early stages of public sector enterprise architecture implementation: outlining complexities of interoperability
    Open this publication in new window or tab >>Ambiguities in the early stages of public sector enterprise architecture implementation: outlining complexities of interoperability
    2011 (English)In: Electronic government / [ed] Marijn Janssen, Hans J. Scholl, Maria A. Wimmer, Yao-Hua Tan, Springer Berlin/Heidelberg, 2011, p. 367-377Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In recent years the development of eGovernment has increasingly gone from service provision to striving for an interoperable public sector, with Enterprise Architectures being an increasingly popular approach. However, a central issue is the coordination of work, due to differing perceptions among involved actors. This paper provides a deepened understanding of this by addressing the question of how differing interpretations of interoperability benefits affect the coordination in the early stages of implementing a public sector Enterprise Architecture. As a case-study, the interoperability efforts in Swedish eHealth are examined by interviews with key-actors. The theoretical framework is a maturity model with five levels of interoperability issues and benefits. The findings highlight the need to clarify decision-making roles, ambiguities concerning jurisdictions between authorities and that differing perceptions of IT-infrastructure is connected to overall goals. The paper also suggests a re-conceptualization of eGovernment maturity by moving away from sequential models.

    Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
    Springer Berlin/Heidelberg, 2011
    Series
    Lecture Notes in Computer Science (LNCS), ISSN 0302-9743 ; 6846
    Keywords
    eGovernment, Interoperability, Maturity models, Implementation, Coordination, Complexity
    National Category
    Information Systems
    Research subject
    Informatics
    Identifiers
    urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-20688 (URN)10.1007/978-3-642-22878-0_31 (DOI)2-s2.0-80052759011 (Scopus ID)978-3-642-22877-3 (ISBN)
    Conference
    10th IFIPWG 8.5 International Conference (EGOV 2011), Delft, The Netherlands, August 28 - September 2, 2011
    Available from: 2012-01-02 Created: 2012-01-02 Last updated: 2018-02-19Bibliographically approved
  • 6.
    Larsson, Hannu
    Örebro University, Örebro University School of Business.
    Sustainable eGovernance2014Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This thesis focuses on eGovernance – the use of ICT as a means to improve public sector practice. Previous research has shown that there is a lack of long-term discussion on the purposes and directions of eGovernance development, often outlining it as unequivocally positive, while missing to consider the complexities and conflicts involved in this process. In order to understand the complexities of eGovernance a future-oriented perspective is needed. In other words a perspective that not only focuses on using ICT to be responsive to present needs but also making it possible to discuss which goals public sector ICT initiatives should strive for and how these correspond to goals and means in the public sector as a whole. In order to do this I employ a sustainability perspective.

    The aim of this thesis is to understand how eGovernance can be sustainable in such a complex organizational environment. This is approached in four papers; based on two case studies, situated in the public sector of Sweden, and a structured literature review of the use of the sustainability concept in eGovernance research.

    The findings of this thesis include a framework of sustainable eGovernance, including an outline of the different dimensions of sustainability: social, economic, environmental and technical. These dimensions are seen as carriers of different values and goals which are in a process of continuous dialogue and conflict. Cutting across these four dimensions are two themes: decision making and information infrastructure, which make up the backbone of how ICT can be used in order to improve public practice. The theoretical lens of sustainability widens our understanding and helps in the questioning of motivations, directions and implications of eGovernance initiatives. This thesis thus contributes with a theoretically and empirically founded framework, which is suitable as a foundation for sustainable eGovernance development and further research into that area.

    List of papers
    1. Evolving structure in the implementation of healthcare information systems: an actor-network analysis
    Open this publication in new window or tab >>Evolving structure in the implementation of healthcare information systems: an actor-network analysis
    2011 (English)In: Electronic Journal of e-Government, ISSN 1479-439X, E-ISSN 1479-439X, Vol. 9, no 1, p. 30-40Article in journal (Refereed) Published
    Abstract [en]

    Public sector ICT use is now moving towards integration of services and processes across departments, for instance in the healthcare sector. This is a challenging issue as it involves distributed decision making, often across both public and private organizations, which implies a multitude of issues. Enterprise Architectures (EA) aim at providing a common framework that includes data, resources and processes, through which all aspects of the enterprise can be directed towards a common goal in an efficient manner. It as been argued that architectures should be perceived as evolving (rather then as carefully planned roadmaps), although more research on how EA evolves is needed. This paper addresses the general question of, how does an EA evolve during implementation? A case study is used to illustrate how an EA evolves throughout the process of implementation. The case is the implementation of a national patient record system in the decentralized Swedish healthcare system. The project is part of a larger effort to implement an EA in the healthcare sector aimed at further integrating the whole sector.  Data is collected by means of observations, interviews and document analysis. Using an Actor-Network Theory perspective, this paper presents four episodes during which an EA evolves through interactions. In this way the paper contributes with a deepened understanding of how EA evolves by arguing that EA programs should be seen as something that needs to be planned with regard to that it will, and should, evolve in order to respond to needs discovered in the process. The contribution is a deepened understanding of how sub-projects co-evolve with a national EA project, thus mutually affecting each other. This should not be perceived as something unequivocally negative as this might also be strategic, and leads to evolution of other parts of the EA to suit each other.

    Keywords
    actor-network theory, eGovernment, eHealth, enterprise architecture, evolving structure, implementation
    National Category
    Information Systems
    Research subject
    Informatics
    Identifiers
    urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-20687 (URN)
    Projects
    Avhandlingen
    Available from: 2012-01-02 Created: 2012-01-02 Last updated: 2018-01-12Bibliographically approved
    2. Ambiguities in the early stages of public sector enterprise architecture implementation: outlining complexities of interoperability
    Open this publication in new window or tab >>Ambiguities in the early stages of public sector enterprise architecture implementation: outlining complexities of interoperability
    2011 (English)In: Electronic government / [ed] Marijn Janssen, Hans J. Scholl, Maria A. Wimmer, Yao-Hua Tan, Springer Berlin/Heidelberg, 2011, p. 367-377Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In recent years the development of eGovernment has increasingly gone from service provision to striving for an interoperable public sector, with Enterprise Architectures being an increasingly popular approach. However, a central issue is the coordination of work, due to differing perceptions among involved actors. This paper provides a deepened understanding of this by addressing the question of how differing interpretations of interoperability benefits affect the coordination in the early stages of implementing a public sector Enterprise Architecture. As a case-study, the interoperability efforts in Swedish eHealth are examined by interviews with key-actors. The theoretical framework is a maturity model with five levels of interoperability issues and benefits. The findings highlight the need to clarify decision-making roles, ambiguities concerning jurisdictions between authorities and that differing perceptions of IT-infrastructure is connected to overall goals. The paper also suggests a re-conceptualization of eGovernment maturity by moving away from sequential models.

    Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
    Springer Berlin/Heidelberg, 2011
    Series
    Lecture Notes in Computer Science (LNCS), ISSN 0302-9743 ; 6846
    Keywords
    eGovernment, Interoperability, Maturity models, Implementation, Coordination, Complexity
    National Category
    Information Systems
    Research subject
    Informatics
    Identifiers
    urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-20688 (URN)10.1007/978-3-642-22878-0_31 (DOI)2-s2.0-80052759011 (Scopus ID)978-3-642-22877-3 (ISBN)
    Conference
    10th IFIPWG 8.5 International Conference (EGOV 2011), Delft, The Netherlands, August 28 - September 2, 2011
    Available from: 2012-01-02 Created: 2012-01-02 Last updated: 2018-02-19Bibliographically approved
    3. Future-oriented eGovernance: The sustainability concept in eGov research, and ways forward
    Open this publication in new window or tab >>Future-oriented eGovernance: The sustainability concept in eGov research, and ways forward
    2014 (English)In: Government Information Quarterly, ISSN 0740-624X, E-ISSN 1872-9517, Vol. 31, no 1, p. 137-149Article in journal (Refereed) Published
    Abstract [en]

    eGov (eGovernment/eGovernance) is a complex endeavor involving many actors, ambitions, and perspectives. The field has, in research and in practice, over the years expanded its focus from service orientation to a comprehensive perspective with the ambition to integrate all of government in coherent action. Comprehensive integration requires a future-oriented perspective so investment is made in robust and flexible solutions meeting not only today's demands but also sustainable to meet those of the future. This paper addresses the use of the sustainability concept in eGov research. We discuss definitions and elements of sustainability and conduct a structured review of eGov literature investigating how various sustainability areas (social, economic, environmental and technical) are addressed. We find 21 overall themes in 94 papers, with the highest number in the “social” category. Two cross-cutting themes to which 21 overall themes relate are also identified; Decision-making and Infrastructure. Findings show that sustainability is mainly addressed narrowly, focusing on projects rather than general issues, and shallowly with a focus on single factors rather than the complex interaction among them, and with little foundation in sustainability theory. The paper contributes with an overview of themes in previous research as well as theory-based input for future research efforts on eGov sustainability, from a dynamic and sociotechnical sustainability perspective.

    Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
    San Diego: Elsevier, 2014
    Keywords
    eGovernance, eGovernment, Sustainability, Complexity, Literature review
    National Category
    Information Systems
    Research subject
    Information technology
    Identifiers
    urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-33253 (URN)10.1016/j.giq.2013.07.004 (DOI)000331428500017 ()2-s2.0-84895906710 (Scopus ID)
    Available from: 2014-01-23 Created: 2014-01-23 Last updated: 2018-01-11Bibliographically approved
    4. Sustainable eGovernance?: decision making, coordination and continuity in Swedish eGov practice
    Open this publication in new window or tab >>Sustainable eGovernance?: decision making, coordination and continuity in Swedish eGov practice
    (English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The use of ICTs in the public sector, eGovernment, is increasingly understood as a complex phenomenon intricately embedded in a continuously changing environment including multiple actors, rather referred to as eGovernance. A need for research that is “future oriented” has been identified, and previous research has suggested a sustainability perspective. Research employing the sustainability concept has increased recently but is still a fledgling research area without a common focus or use of the concept. There is a lack of research with a thorough basis in sustainability theory and a need for empirically founded theoretical development regarding sustainable eGovernance. Hence, the research question of this paper is, How can current eGovernance practice be interpreted from a sustainability perspective? A case study is performed in the context of Swedish eGovernance practice, at national and municipal level. Inductive interviews are used to investigate practitioners’ views. Thereafter we test a framework of eGovernance sustainability, developed based on the eGovernance literature, against the views of the practitioners. We find that sustainability in eGovernance is most prominently related with decision making and coordination related to infrastructure, as actors struggle with achieving continuity and implementing a holistic view of the use of ICT in the public sector. We also find that eGovernance research, while still shallow, has a focus that corresponds well to the issues that practitioners find most crucial for the future. Hence, the results provide a consolidated framework of eGovernance sustainability issues, both theoretically and empirically informed. 

    Keywords
    eGovernance, eGov, Sustainability, EGOV4SD, Case study, Governance, Decision making, Infrastructure
    National Category
    Information Systems, Social aspects
    Research subject
    Informatics
    Identifiers
    urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-35332 (URN)
    Available from: 2014-06-11 Created: 2014-06-11 Last updated: 2017-10-17Bibliographically approved
  • 7.
    Larsson, Hannu
    et al.
    Örebro University, Örebro University School of Business.
    Grönlund, Åke
    Örebro University, Örebro University School of Business.
    Future-oriented eGovernance: The sustainability concept in eGov research, and ways forward2014In: Government Information Quarterly, ISSN 0740-624X, E-ISSN 1872-9517, Vol. 31, no 1, p. 137-149Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    eGov (eGovernment/eGovernance) is a complex endeavor involving many actors, ambitions, and perspectives. The field has, in research and in practice, over the years expanded its focus from service orientation to a comprehensive perspective with the ambition to integrate all of government in coherent action. Comprehensive integration requires a future-oriented perspective so investment is made in robust and flexible solutions meeting not only today's demands but also sustainable to meet those of the future. This paper addresses the use of the sustainability concept in eGov research. We discuss definitions and elements of sustainability and conduct a structured review of eGov literature investigating how various sustainability areas (social, economic, environmental and technical) are addressed. We find 21 overall themes in 94 papers, with the highest number in the “social” category. Two cross-cutting themes to which 21 overall themes relate are also identified; Decision-making and Infrastructure. Findings show that sustainability is mainly addressed narrowly, focusing on projects rather than general issues, and shallowly with a focus on single factors rather than the complex interaction among them, and with little foundation in sustainability theory. The paper contributes with an overview of themes in previous research as well as theory-based input for future research efforts on eGov sustainability, from a dynamic and sociotechnical sustainability perspective.

  • 8.
    Larsson, Hannu
    et al.
    Örebro University, Örebro University School of Business.
    Grönlund, Åke
    Örebro University, Örebro University School of Business.
    Sustainable eGovernance?: decision making, coordination and continuity in Swedish eGov practiceManuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The use of ICTs in the public sector, eGovernment, is increasingly understood as a complex phenomenon intricately embedded in a continuously changing environment including multiple actors, rather referred to as eGovernance. A need for research that is “future oriented” has been identified, and previous research has suggested a sustainability perspective. Research employing the sustainability concept has increased recently but is still a fledgling research area without a common focus or use of the concept. There is a lack of research with a thorough basis in sustainability theory and a need for empirically founded theoretical development regarding sustainable eGovernance. Hence, the research question of this paper is, How can current eGovernance practice be interpreted from a sustainability perspective? A case study is performed in the context of Swedish eGovernance practice, at national and municipal level. Inductive interviews are used to investigate practitioners’ views. Thereafter we test a framework of eGovernance sustainability, developed based on the eGovernance literature, against the views of the practitioners. We find that sustainability in eGovernance is most prominently related with decision making and coordination related to infrastructure, as actors struggle with achieving continuity and implementing a holistic view of the use of ICT in the public sector. We also find that eGovernance research, while still shallow, has a focus that corresponds well to the issues that practitioners find most crucial for the future. Hence, the results provide a consolidated framework of eGovernance sustainability issues, both theoretically and empirically informed. 

  • 9.
    Larsson, Hannu
    et al.
    Örebro University, Örebro University School of Business.
    Grönlund, Åke
    Örebro University, Örebro University School of Business.
    Sustainable eGovernance?: Practices, problems and beliefs about the future in Swedish eGov practice2016In: Government Information Quarterly, ISSN 0740-624X, E-ISSN 1872-9517, Vol. 33, no 1, p. 105-114Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The use of ICTs in the public sector, eGovernance, is understood as a complex phenomenon intricately embedded in a continuously changing environment, including multiple actors with disparate interests.  A need for research that takes this complexity into account has been identified, and previous research has suggested employing a sustainability perspective.  The use of the sustainability concept in the eGovernance context is an emerging area without a common focus or use of the concept. There is a lack of research with a thorough basis in sustainability theory, and a need for empirical research focusing on sustainable eGovernance. In order to respond to this need the research question of this paper is, How can current eGovernance practice be interpreted from a sustainability perspective? A case study is performed in the context of Swedish eGovernance practice, at national and municipal level. Interviews are used to investigate practitioners’ views, which are analyzed by using a framework, developed based on eGovernance literature that highlights sustainability. We find that sustainability in eGovernance practice in this case revolve to a large extent around how actors struggle with achieving continuity and implementing a holistic view of the use of ICT in the public sector. We also highlight the issue of trade-offs between different sustainability dimensions.  

  • 10.
    Nguyen, Thi Thanh Hai
    et al.
    University of Eastern Finland, Kuopio,Finland.
    Eikebrokk, Tom Roar
    University of Agder, Kristiansand, Norway.
    Moe, Carl Erik
    University of Agder, Kristiansand, Norway.
    Medaglia, Rony
    Copenhagen Business School, Copenhagen, Denmark.
    Larsson, Hannu
    Örebro University, Örebro University School of Business.
    Tapanainen, Tommi
    Hanyang University, Seoul, South Korea.
    A Cross-country Comparison of Success Factor Priorities for Health Information Technology Managers: Evidence of Convergence in the Nordic Countries2015In: 2015 48th Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS), 2015, p. 2824-2833Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The implementation of Health Information Technology (HIT) can improve the provision of high-quality and efficient healthcare services; however, it has met with significant challenges in many cases. Despite the challenges occurring in many countries, prior research on HIT implementation success factors is, however, mainly from the USA. This research conducted a survey to IT managers in Nordic countries' healthcare organizations and compiled a list of the HIT implementation success factors that these managers considered important in each country. It was found that IT managers in Nordic countries agree highly with each other in their judgment of the importance of these success factors. While Nordic countries' healthcare systems and culture are relatively similar, the results suggest that an internationally applicable set of recommendations for the successful completion of HIT implementations could be within the realm of possibility.

  • 11. Nguyen, Thi Thanh Hai
    et al.
    Eikebrokk, Tom Roar
    Moe, Carl Erik
    Medaglia, Rony
    Larsson, Hannu
    Örebro University, Örebro University School of Business.
    Tapanainen, Tommi
    Information Technology Managers and Critical Success Factors in Healthcare Organizationsin Nordic countries2014Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Many studies have attempted to identify the success factors for Health Information Technology (HIT) implementation. Unfortunately, such success factor lists are long and unwieldy, and it can be difficult to see which ones should have received more attention than others. Thus, there is a need to examine critical success factors (CSFs) that should be most attended to in the context of competing priorities. IT managers, through their experience, can know best which relevant factors have been crucial for successful implementation of the projects; therefore, it is imperative to understand the perceptions of IT managers regarding relative importance of success factors in HIT implementation. This research aims to reassess and synthesize CSFs influencing HIT implementation, focusing on the question: “What are the CSFs in HIT implementation from IT managers’ point of view?” We surveyed the IT managers in four Nordic countries (Denmark, Finland, Norway and Swe-den) and discuss the preliminary results regarding IT manager background and the CSFs in this research-in-progress paper.

  • 12.
    Twizeyimana, Jean Damascene
    et al.
    Örebro University, Örebro University School of Business. College of Science & Technology University of Rwanda, Kigali, Rwanda.
    Larsson, Hannu
    Örebro University, Örebro University School of Business.
    Grönlund, Åke
    Örebro University, Örebro University School of Business.
    E-government in Rwanda: Implementation, Challenges and Reflections2018In: Electronic Journal of e-Government, ISSN 1479-439X, E-ISSN 1479-439X, Vol. 16, no 1, p. 19-31Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    E‑government is currently high on the agenda in many developing countries (DCs). While e‑government is well‑established in many developed countries it is new to least developed countries. Countries that start implementing e‑government today can benefit from easy import of modern technologies, but adaptation to local conditions and the organizational change that is required cannot be imported, but must be developed at home. By using examples of an ongoing initiative by the Government of Rwanda to digitalize all G2C and G2B into a single window platform, the current study investigated the important challenges in the implementation of e‑government in Rwanda. An interpretive case study was followed. Data was collected through interviews and participatory observations during August to December 2015. Data analysis was inductive, the analysis method was content analysis, and the coding followed open‑coding. NVivo software has been used to handle data and facilitate the analysis. The study found six overarching categories of aspects that challenge a successful implementation of e‑government in Rwanda. They include information infrastructure for e‑government, social inclusion, governance, management, trust in the new system, and languages. However, challenges to e‑government implementation should not be taken as of the same extent, neither their degree of mitigation. Rather, they influence and are influenced by various contextual factors which include political support, nature of the e‑government project, implementation strategies, human and socio‑economic development, existing information infrastructure, and operational capabilities. Having said this, we also argue that countries should learn from one another of their experiences, success stories, and mistakes. Despite a number of associated challenges, the adopted public‑private partnership (PPP) approach to e‑Government implementation in Rwanda might indeed seem as a suitable catalyst for e‑government success in the country.

    2.5.0.0

  • 13.
    Wihlborg, Elin
    et al.
    Linköping University, Linköping, Sweden.
    Hedström, Karin
    Örebro University, Örebro University School of Business.
    Larsson, Hannu
    Örebro University, Örebro University School of Business.
    e-government for all: Norm-critical perspectives and public values in digitalization2017In: 50th Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences: IEEE conference proceedings, 2017Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    There are hopes that e-government will bring many benefits, including efficiency, democratization, participation, and emancipation of citizens. However, despite some evidence that supports these claims there are also cases that digitalization can exclude citizens and build new barriers. This is a special challenge for already disadvantaged groups falling outside the norms. In this study we approach the notion of a norm-critical perspective in relation to e-government through a review of literature in combination with action research oriented workshops. From this we conclude that there is a need for more norm-critical perspectives in research on e-government, as most research today focuses on socio-economic digital-divide issues. We also show that it is difficult for involved actors to see beyond the norms and be norm-critical since the norms are embedded into the practices, which in this case, e-government has developed and used. 

  • 14.
    Wihlborg, Elin
    et al.
    School of Management and Engineering, Linköping University, Linköping, Sweden .
    Larsson, Hannu
    Örebro University, Örebro University School of Business.
    Hedström, Karin
    Örebro University, Örebro University School of Business.
    The Computer Says No!”: A Case Study on Automated Decision-making in Public Authorities2016In: Proceedings of the Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences / [ed] Tung X. Bui and Ralph H. Sprague, Jr., Piscataway, NJ: IEEE conference proceedings, 2016, p. 2903-2912Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In e-government automated decision-making increases, forming part of a trend towards “smart” and self-regulating systems. This necessitates the introduction of new relationships and practices, challenging the division of responsibilities in public administration. Using a case study approach, this paper elaborates on implications of automated decision-making for professional officers in a Swedish public organization. We conclude that automation should be framed in relation to the rules of law and ethics of justice. Furthermore, the roles and competences of professionals are changing, with automated systems beginning to resemble cobureaucrats. Professionals can either make an alliance with the automated system or the client. This choice of strategy is related to the issues of legitimacy and professional competences. We also identify practices as being either a form of caring ethics or a formal legal ethic norm. Such practices should be further addressed to influence practices promoting legitimate systems citizens can trust.

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