The e-Government Development Discourse: Analysing Contemporary and Future Growth Prospects in Developing and Emerging Economies

Kelvin J. Bwalya


E-Government is a multidimensional phenomenon that has undergone various evolutions, culminating in its increased complexity. Most of this complexity has been brought about by technologies that have a relatively short lifecycle. With the rapidly evolving conceptualisation of technologies and managerial tactics utilised in the realm of e-Government, it follows that the way e-Government is perceived, designed, deployed and employed in different contextual settings becomes difficult. A quick scan through literature, especially of articles dating back not more than three years in journals of high repute, demonstrates how much academic research is lagging behind industry in advancement of knowledge or ground-breaking innovations. There is, therefore, need for academia to up the game and explore contemporary applied topics in e-Government so as to be relevant to actual e-Government implementation. This book brings out current research and practice concepts, thereby articulating the research agenda for e-Government. When e-Government was first conceived, it was designed upon basic technologies where the emphasis was only on simple display of government information for citizens to read. Nowadays, e-Government design comprises many complicated modules such as upload and download consoles, two-way interaction consoles between citizens and government agents, integrated government business processes presenting the whole of government, and it does not solely depend on technology. The complexity of e-Government has now evolved to include political, cultural, economic, social and technical dimensions. Bringing all these difficult aspects together is so complicated that it needs carefully planned strategies informed by local contextual characteristics. Rapid evolution of technology demands that e-Government designs and implementation have to evolve to remain relevant. Although there is rapid evolution of e-Government design and implementation, many publications have not adequately delved into the contemporary and future trends of e-Government. The lack of adequate text on contemporary e-Government advancements has culminated in a serious dearth of appropriate information which could be used in the actual design and implementation of e-Government. For example, there has been an active advocacy on the need to open up government data to inculcate the culture of transparency, yet there are few basic publications on this topic which do not go into the details and contextual nuances of this topic. Unlike giving formulaic definitions and conceptual standpoints on many aspects of e-Government as is the case in many e-Government publications, this book will explore the frontiers of global knowledge value chains by discussing current and future dimensions of e-Government. For example, the book discusses the concept of data governance by exploring how actual opening up of government data can be achieved, especially in a developing world context. Further, the book posits that opening government data should be followed by the opening up of government business processes in order to peddle the concept of accountability and responsiveness. Much text on data governance has concentrated on articulating the basic definitions surrounding this concept. Another very important topic explored in this book is regarding how the concept of decolonisation can be extended to e-Government by providing practical examples as to how researchers in the developing world can contribute to the advancement of e-Government as a scientific field of enquiry and guide its implementation, thereof. Decolonisation is advocated for in e-Government research so that there is a balance in the inclusion of the Afrocentric knowledge into e-Government advancement other than over-reliance on the Euro-, Asia- and America-centric knowledge value chains (Mbembe 2015). As e-Government is a very expensive undertaking, the issue of funding has excluded African countries and a majority of the developing world from implementing e-Government. Despite funding being a critical cornerstone of e-Government development, there is a dearth of information on this topic. This book provides a chapter which discusses traditional and innovative ways of funding e-Government design and implementation which can go a long way in improving e-Government penetration into the developing world. Further, the book explores how intelligent e-Government applications can be designed, especially in resource-constrained countries. A couple of emerging technology innovations such as fog computing and intelligent information technology are explored within the realm of e-Government design. The book is intended to be used by specialist researchers in the field of, among others, information management, applied information systems, computer science, and by organisations and institutions engaged in research and consultancy in e-Government, freedom of information, big data analytics and data governance who will find this book worthwhile. Information officers, system designers and decision-makers or policymakers in government organs and departments who may use this scholarly book as a key reference source to guide their decisions. This book uses some content which has been tested for scholarly rigour in academic journals and conferences. No material has been reproduced in this book verbatim, and if part of it is used in any form, it has been rephrased or embedded in the discussions in this book giving it contextual relevance and due reference has been provided in each case. Therefore, the book generally presents content that has not been presented, published or plagiarised from any source(s). Mainly, the book is conceptualised using systematic literature review, empirical research done in Zambia in 2012 and author’s experience in researching and consulting in this field. All the figures in the book have been conceptualised by the author or adapted from other sources to suit the context.


  • Part A: E-Government Research and Practice
  • Chapter 1: Mapping the e-Government Agenda: Business Case Modelling
  • Chapter 2: E-Government Development – Global South Versus Global North
  • Chapter 3: Discourse of e-Government Research and Practice in Developing Countries
  • Chapter 4: Decolonisation of e-Government in Africa
  • Part B: E-Government Design and Implementation
  • Chapter 5: E-Government Funding Frameworks
  • Chapter 6: Process Modelling and Re-Engineering of Government Systems
  • Chapter 7: Semantic Governance Ecosystems and Integration Paradigms
  • Chapter 8: Open-Source Solutions for Design of Pervasive Government Systems
  • Part C: Emerging Dimensions of e-Government
  • Chapter 9: Data Governance, Open Governance, Freedom of Information and e-Government
  • Chapter 10: Intelligent Public Service Administration Through Big Data


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