ŠAVŠ/TAČR Digital Czechia in a Digital Europe


Regulation of e-Government in the European Union Jiří Strouhal The basic element of e-Government is the development of the use of ICT to increase efficiency in public administration activities. These activities include the performance of executive activities, the provision of services, access to public administration information, and the participation of citizens and various organizations in joint governance. Lastly, e-Government is expected to have the potential to reduce costs and improve the quality of public services. According to the country ranking for the 2018 period, the Nordic countries (i.e. Denmark, Sweden and Finland) are among the three most successful. Even on these distinct winners’ podiums, it is not clear whether a centralized or a decentralized approach is to be preferred. In Denmark, there is a largely decentralized model implemented through the Ministry of Finance, the Agency for Digitisation, the Ministry of Industry, Business, and Financial Affairs and the Ministry of Climate, Energy and Utilities. Given the number of ministries responsible, the role of the coordinator, the Agency for Digitisation, is crucial. In Finland, the Ministry of Finance (in the field of public sector ICT) and the Ministry of Transport and Communications are involved; in Sweden, it is the Ministry of Infrastructure. The decentralized approach can also be traced in the following jurisdictions: Luxembourg (Ministry for Digitalisation, Government IT Centre, Ministry of State, Ministry of the Economy, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Higher Education and Research), Estonia (Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communication, Government CIO Office, Estonian Association of Information Technology and Telecommunication, e-Estonia Council). The advantage of decentralized models can be seen above all as a better knowledge of the issue at professional levels rather than at the senior governing body. However, it is necessary that the delegated departments have sufficient delegated powers from above. On the contrary, a clear disadvantage of decentralized models is the higher number of qualified staff in individual fragmented positions and the clear need for quality coordination of decisions with national strategic plans in the field of e-Government. In all the other countries analyzed (the Netherlands, Ireland, the United Kingdom, Belgium, Austria, Malta and Lithuania), a single ministry is in charge of e-government. Overall, it is not possible to generalize about a clear preference for the ministerial portfolio, although the responsibility of the Ministries of Finance, Interior and Industry, or the government office itself,

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