n Journal of Public Administration - E-government as an alternate service delivery strategy
|Article Title||E-government as an alternate service delivery strategy|
|© Publisher:||South African Association of Public Administration and Management (SAAPAM)|
|Journal||Journal of Public Administration|
|Author||M. Subban, I. Nzimakwe and P. Pillay|
|Publication Date||Nov 2007|
|Pages||235 - 246|
|Keyword(s)||University of KwaZulu Natal|
E-Government has become a buzz word in public service delivery as it is viewed as an alternate service delivery strategy in a post-democratic South Africa. The President has stressed the need for creativity in bridging the gap between the services provided, and the community whom we are called to serve. In a world of interconnectedness, citizens are now able to regularly interface with public institutions, in an attempt to bring services closer to the people. The spirit of e-government is an attempt to accelerate the philosophy of Batho Pele. The past decade of reform in South Africa has been characterised by three critical focal points of delivery i.e.: Government-to-Government, Government-to-Business and Government-to-Citizens, through enhanced, cost-effective and efficient delivery of services and transfer of knowledge. The establishment of multi-purpose community centres (MPCCs) are gaining popularity as one-stop agencies to accelerate delivery. Whilst concomitant efforts are in place to reinforce e-governance, there are several challenges in managing service delivery within the technological age. Some of the more pertinent challenges include inter alia, transparency versus privacy rights, bridging the digital divide, the expense of infrastructure and maintenance, global impacts and accessibility. This article examines the benefits of e-government in service delivery against the backdrop of impoverished communities and the digital divide. Furthermore, the notion of multi-purpose community centres will be explored as a vehicle for enhancing service delivery and serve as a catalyst in the information era. The highlight of this article culminates in a pragmatic model to incorporate e-governance as an innovative service delivery strategy.
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