E-gov resources on the way

Practitioners of e-government have the promise of a road map in their quest to implement best practices.

The Center for Technology in Government has started a yearlong research program that will examine best practices for planning, development and implementation of e-government programs.

The E-Government: Creating Tools of the Trade program (www.ctg.albany.edu/egov) was established in response to the concerns of government managers who would like to see more definitive e-government resources, said Sharon Dawes, director of the CTG.

"Electronic government presents more than just new uses for technology," Dawes said. "This presents a whole new way to think about delivering services to consumers. We've found a lot of information out there on the subject, but little if any answers the question of how."

Throughout the year, the center will present reports, presentations, executive-level briefings and case studies regarding aspects of e-government. Access to the information will be free and available on the center's Web site (www.ctg.albany.edu).

CTG chose the topics to research by surveying e-government officials at all levels nationwide. The issues raised most frequently included:

    * Methods and issues of data sharing.

    * An e-government knowledge repository.

    * Transitioning from the static to the dynamic Web.

    * Managing electronic records in e-government.

    * E-government laboratories for local governments.

    * Baseline measures on cost and performance of existing services.

    * Guidance on building a business case for e-government.

    * Case studies in collaboration.

"People who work in different sectors and levels of e-government face different issues in order to create the best system for their situation," Dawes said. "We found that people who work in administration or the design aspect, for example, were really interested in creating a business proposal for e-government. People at the local level were really eager to create e-government labs in which to experiment as to how to create their own systems."

To get a broad cross-section of participants, CTG research will be conducted with help from national organizations such as the National Association of Chief Information Officers, the National Association of Counties and the National Science Foundation. The CTG also will tap subscribers to its free news service (www.ctg.albany.edu/ctgwebnews.html) as well as local government officials in Albany, where the center is located.

The CTG is an applied research center at the University at Albany, State University of New York that works with governments to develop information strategies that foster innovation and enhance the quality of public services.

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