Governments Take Advantage of the Internet to Serve Citizens
electronic government is still some years away, governments
at all levels over the world are beginning to offer more electronic
services to the public, according to a recent General Services
the request of the Intergovernmental Advisory Board, GSA's
Office of Intergovernmental Solutions (OIS), a part of the
Office of Governmentwide Policy, conducted a survey to find
out what electronic services governments are providing. OIS
reviewed more than 200 sites and described 40 of them in the
Service Delivery: Governments Using Technology to Serve the
the United States, state and local governments provide more
services directly to the citizen than does the federal government.
However, local governments are normally strapped for resources
and slow to take advantage of new technology.
is changing, according to Program Director Sally Matthews.
"Local governments are now utilizing web-based applications
that let citizens renew their driver's licenses, pay fines,
or search records," she said.
the national level, we see a trend where services are targeted
to specific groups of citizens. For example, Access
America for Students electronically integrates services
and information previously provided by a number of federal
also called attention to Navy's
Lifelines, a multimedia transactional site for military
personnel. "It's really great, Matthews said. "It's a very
advanced site that provides many services such as online banking.
Navy is even replacing keyboards for those that will accept
the international level," she continued, "a few countries
are providing services based on life events. Singapore's e-Citizen
Centre site is an outstanding example of this approach. Cities
are also using the web to foster community involvement. Berlin,
Germany uses the Internet to create a virtual neighborhood.
Citizens can register as virtual citizens, get e-mail, and
receive web page hosting."
The future of electronic government looks promising, according
to the report.
In addition to the online report above, you can order copies
by calling Renee Hughes at (202) 501-291. For more information,
contact Sally Matthews at (202) 501-1476.