Ines Mergel in 10 sentences #CeDEM17

Ines Mergel is one of our keynote-speaker at the CeDEM17 at the Danube University Krems in May 2017.  We asked her to send us 10 sentences about her keynote, her expectations of CeDEM17 and her vision of the future.

CeDEM17 – International Conference for E-Democracy and Open Government 2017 (17.05-19.05.2017)
Registration open

Professor Dr. Ines Mergel is full Professor of Public Administration in the Department of Politics and Public Administration at the University of Konstanz, Germany. Previously, she served as Associate Professor with tenure at the Department of Public Administration and International Affairs at Syracuse University’s Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse, NY, USA. Before joining the faculty at the Maxwell School, Professor Mergel taught at Harvard’s Extension School in the Management Master Program and stayed as a doctoral student and postdoctoral fellow at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.
Professor Mergel’s research focuses on public management topics, specifically the managerial and technological processes in the implementation and institutionalization of innovative public management practices. Current projects include digital transformation, open innovation, big data, and the use of inhouse social networking technologies in the public sector.

Professor Mergel is Associate Editor of the journal Government Information Quarterly, serves on the editorial boards of Public Administration Review, Information Polity, Public Performance & Management Review, and the board of directors of the Public Management Research Association. In 2016, Professor Mergel was appointed as a Senior Fellow at the German Research Institute for Public Administration.

Image: Private

What are the main assets of your keynote?
What are your expectations of CeDEM17?
What is your vision of the future?

  1. Digital transformation in the public sector needs to be more than transition from analog to digital service delivery.
  2. In order to achieve digital transformation, government needs to abandon its internal logic when rethinking services.
  3. Along the innovation continuum, government needs to move from formal pathways of traditional request-for-proposal processes that are
  4. led by contract managers, to new forms of co-production and co-innovation with users of services (either citizens or other agencies as clients).

  5. New structural forms of innovation creation are emerging: a) innovation labs as internal think tanks that focus either on internal processes or external citizen participation; and b) digital service teams and digital agencies.
  6. Both are using agile innovation methods to rethink how public administration can operate and deliver services.
  7. They are focused on changing public administration processes and culture and aim to respond to changing needs of the public.
  8. However, moving responsibility for digital transformation back into government, we will need to solve the innovation paradox: Where should innovation in the public sector come from?
  9. My expectation for CeDEM17 is to start a productive conversation with other participants on how to purse digital transformation in government.
  10. I am expecting to learn from others about their digital transformation projects.
  11. My hope for the future is that government allows public servants to rethink and question existing practice to lower the burden of access and increase trust in institutions.

CeDEM17 – International Conference for E-Democracy and Open Government 2017 (17.05-19.05.2017)
Registration open

Dave Karpf in 10 sentences #CeDEM17

Dave Karpf is one of our keynote-speaker at the CeDEM17 at the Danube University Krems in May 2017.  We asked him to send us 10 sentences about his keynote, his expectations of CeDEM17 and his vision of the future.

CeDEM17 – International Conference for E-Democracy and Open Government 2017 (17.05-19.05.2017)
Registration open

Dave Karpf is associate professor and director of graduate studies at the George Washington University School of Media & Public Affairs. His primary research focus is on how the internet is changing civil society organizations and large-scale movements for political change. He is the author of The MoveOn Effect: The Unexpected Transformation of American Political Advocacy (Oxford University Press, 2012) and Analytic Activism: Digital Listening and the New Political Strategy (Oxford University Press, 2016). He also writes about technology, politics, and strategy for a wide range of outlets.

Image: private

What are the main assets of your keynote?
What are your expectations of CeDEM17?
What is your vision of the future?

  1. Digital media not only creates new forms of political speech, it also enables new types of listening.
  2. The use of data analytics for listening is changing democratic institutions, allowing them to measure public sentiment in new ways.
  3. This is particularly noteworthy in the area of political activism.
  4. “Netroots” activist organizations now use digital listening to set up testing and learning routines that help surface innovative new tactics and strategies.
  5. But digital listening/analytics also comes with a set of biases that can warp political power if misapplied.
  6. We need to understand both the promise and the limitations of these new communications tools.
  7. In the digital age, the organizations that build the greatest power will be the organizations that do the best job of intelligently harnessing digital listening and testing.
  8. I expect CeDEM17 will be a robust and enlightening discussion of how digital media is being used in the transformation of government and politics.
  9. I am hopeful that we will discuss both the promises and the pitfalls of e-democracy and open government.
  10. I expect that politics will remain frustrating, challenging, and complicated in the future, and that the affordances of digital media will be both an asset and a liability.

CeDEM17 – International Conference for E-Democracy and Open Government 2017 (17.05-19.05.2017)
Registration open

Day 3: ICEDEG 2017 in Quito, Ecuador

21 April 2017: Day 3

Keynote: “The Fourth Indutrial Revolution and the Democratization of Information” by Ernesto Kruger (Kruger Corporation, Ecuador)

This 4th revolution digitizes all, is disruptive and democratizes all: it is based on a collaborative economy, sharing, transparency and empowerment of people. This talk is about how we got to where we are today, the characteristics of this revolution, the future, and how to be invovled in government and society. Understanding the industrial revolution 4.0 starts by looking back to the previous industrial revolutions in 1784, 1870, 1969…

The 4th industrial evolution “is the convergence of physical, digital, and biological worlds”:

  • physical: from car to space flight
  • digital: from internt of things to economy on demand
  • biological: human genome to biotechnology

This raises several questions and makes it necessary to consider certain issues:

Can technology think? Can it teach? What is the impact of the 4IR on society, education, work, society and regulation? Processes will no longer need approval by government, post offices, banks etc.. , so what will happen to human work? Will digitalising everything mean or imply democraticising everything? Technologies are not just about making things & sevices available, but also about enabling access to such technologies. It is important to remember that the changes are and always will be irreversible (whether it concerns technology, business or research).

Session: eParticipation

In this session I presented the paper written with Peter Parycek and Robert Krimmer, that looks at the role of lurkers as contributors of  value in e-participation. But in this session, others addressed the role of value in e-participation and e-government too. Vittorio Scarano looks at how to increase public value through co-creation of open knowledge, whilst Patricia Acosta-Vargas addresses quality evaluation of government websites, in particular the issue of website accessibility.

Session eGovernance

Zanna Aniscenko lookes at the Andean countries’ strategies for improving public service through e-government concept. Harekrishna Misra looks at the Indian context, and argues that financial inclusion, as a strategy, would encourage citizens to enhance their activity portfolios and thus savings, empower women, facilitate remittance, boost production and consumption. Focusing on the detection of the main communities of collaboration between authors registered in the bibliographic database Scopus and the identification of more relevant research topics, Angel Fiallos uses Social Network Analysis to study the networks for researchers in comparison to the “The National Plan for Good Living” issued by the government of Ecuador.

Session: eHealth

Carmen Vaca proposes a method based on structural analysis to detect emerging leaders on Twitter after a catastrophe, focusing on the 4M tweets related to Ecuador’s earthquake in April 2016.

Jorge Granda Cantuña presents the design and development process of a Noise Pollution Measurement System which integrates a Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) and a Body Access Network (BAN) capable of measuring noise pollution levels as well as monitoring its health effects on humans. In the paper presented by Johnny Torres investigate how tweets posted by people in Ecuador, through different mobile applications, reflect their fitness activities and lifestyle. By aggregating individual posts made on social media services act as sociometers of cities’ health and fitness  and also illustrates the potential of geolactivities.

Session: eSociety

Papers in this session focused on education in particular. Johnny Torres looked at how contribution in collaborative texts can be measured  using NMF modeling, Priscilla Valdivezo considered how learning can be analysed to improve education whilst Rosa Navarrete considered the use of emedded markup for semantic annotations in e-government and e-education websites.


All good things have to come to an end, but Luis Terán invited us to join him again at ICEDEG 2018!

Noella Edelmann with Luis Terán (left) and Andreas Meier (right).

Closing session.

Day 2: ICEDEG 2017 in Quito, Ecuador

20. April 2017: Day 2

The second day began with an introduction by Andreas Meier, Chair of the ICEDEG. He not only described the aims of the conference, that is, to connect experts and researchers, generate excellent output, but also encouraged all the attendees to visit the many beautiful sites of Quito.

“Big Data Integration for eGovernment” Keynote by Philippe Cudré-Mauroux (University of Fribourg & eXascale Infolab, CH)

Philippe Cudré-Mauroux

Big data can generate significant financial value across sectors. From eXascale Infolab, Philippe looks at the Big Data deluge and the issues associated with it. He also considers how big data can help e-government:

  • The n-Vs of Big Data: Volume, Velocity and Variety;
  • Entity-Centric Data Integration;
  • The XI Pipeline to integrate textual data;
  • Shows 2 use cases:  Armatweet and Dependency-Driven Analytics.

Session: Data/opinion Mining and Decision Support

On online and social media, such as Twitter, one of the most difficult things for  is to detect and ban people who harass others. To address these issues,  researchers have developed a strategy to help detect racist users and content in the context of the networks of the two former 2016 US Presidential Candidates (Fabricio Layedra). Another issue in governmental areas is the assessment made by the general public on their management.  Francisco Cabrera proposes a  model for the social assessment of governmental areas through intangible assets. Innovation in the public-sector refers to the development of important improvements in the public administration and services. The aim of the study presented analyses the trends and the behavioural patterns in the attacks to the data network of an institution of the public-sector (Mayra Macas).

Session: eDemocracy

A group of researchers present the SAVE system, an electronic voting system designed that has been used in 150 University elections preserving all the requirements that a secure voting system must have while being affordable and flexible enough to adapt to the different regulations (Xavier Ochoa and Enrique Pelaez). Félix Fernández-Peña, Diego León-Solís, Xavier Calle-Gómez and Pilar Urrutia-Urrutia determine how valuable social actions are for e-collaboration using an open source Facebook application named \textit{Sigma} and an statistic module called \textit{Gamma}. Rodrigo F. Castro presents a way of predicting Venezuelan election results using Twitter.

Keynote: “Social and Participatory Computing: Lessons for E-Democracy and E-Government” Joseph Konstan (University of Minnesota, USA).

Joseph Konstan

There are many lessons to be learned from collaborating, contributing, crowdsourcing, and aggregating people’s wish to provide information, work together. What is the role of social computing in e-government and e-democracy? We can see examples of its iuse in collaborative information and reviews of public infrastructure, transport or accomodation. But how can people be motivated to contribute?

  1. Ask them to. People like being them asked and people want to contribute.
  2. Appeal to their uniqueness.
  3. Set goals (as individuals or a team).
  4. Show them something interesting (disagreement is motivating).
  5. Recognize their contributions.

Social computing can help re-invigorate local communities, explore difficult public policy decisions and broaden narrow experiences. But when aggregating micro-contributions, it is necessary to combine data to increase confidence (e.g. statistics, personalisation, iterative review), to consider reputation (allocate more or less?), influence (should it be limited?) and issues of bias and disenfranchisement.

Session: eGovernment

Several solutions are presented in this session. Jorge Granda Cantuña presents a multi-dicisiplinary solution for detecting forest fires in Ecuador based on a wireless sensor network. Another  solution is proposed by Abraham Matus,  an electronic invoicing solution that integrates SMEs in a tax-collection e-government-platform. Alessandro Bettacchi, on the otherhand, discusses the adoption of   cloud computing in the public sector.  Whilst there is a demand for public administrations to use cloud computing, a security framework is necessary.

Poster Session

JeDEM Special Issue on Progress, Insights, and Implications of the Open Government Partnership

JeDEM Special Issue on Progress, Insights, and Implications of the Open Government Partnership Scholars and practitioners with expertise and experience in the area of open government are invited to submit a paper for an upcoming special issue of the Journal of e-Democracy and Open Government (JeDEM) focused on “Progress, Insights, and Implications of the Open Government Partnership.”

In 2016, the Open Government Partnership (OGP) celebrated its five-year anniversary. In those five years, governments have committed to over 2000 reforms aimed at improving transparency, accountability, and citizen participation. Much has changed in five years. Membership in the OGP has grown from 8 to 75 national level governments. While many new members have joined, there have also been departures: Hungary being the most recent. Currently, there is a pilot including 15 subnational governments designed to more proactively involve subnational governments in the initiative.

This special issue of JeDEM is dedicated to fostering a better understanding the progress made within the OGP over the past five years. It contributes to the scholarly and professional discourse about the implications and the insights gathered, thus far, on the future of the OGP and its members.