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Digital Era GovernanceIT Corporations, the State, and e-Government$
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Patrick Dunleavy, Helen Margetts, Simon Bastow, and Jane Tinkler

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780199296194

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199296194.001.0001

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The Comparative Performance of Government IT

The Comparative Performance of Government IT

(p.64) 3 The Comparative Performance of Government IT
Digital Era Governance

Patrick Dunleavy

Helen Margetts

Simon Bastow

Jane Tinkler

Oxford University Press

This chapter assesses the comparative performance of government IT systems in seven countries: United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, the Netherlands, United States, and Canada. The comparative analysis is made in terms of the scrap rate of government IT projects, the costs of IT in the public sector compared to the private sector, and the relative modernity of government IT systems. Given the complexity of making such assessments, a ‘fuzzy set’ social science perspective is used to categorize countries' performance in terms of very rich data and qualitative judgements. The chapter then explores how the patterning of countries' performance can be explained in terms of two sets of explanatory variables — government institutional arrangements and the power of the IT industry in its dealings with government agencies.

Keywords:   comparative performance, information technology, scrap rate, costs, public sector, private sector, modernity, fuzzy set, institutional arrangements, government agencies

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