Development Paths Towards Open Government. An Empirical Analysis Among Heritage Institutions

Estermann, Beat (2018). Development Paths Towards Open Government. An Empirical Analysis Among Heritage Institutions Government Information Quarterly, 35(4), pp. 599-612. Elsevier 10.1016/j.giq.2018.10.005

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In the face of the growing digitization of society, a series of transformations are taking place in the public sector that have been described as the second generation of e-government development. The present article traces how these transformations have been anticipated by successive generations of e-government maturity models and critically assesses existing stage models. Based on a survey among 1560 heritage institutions in 11 countries, an empirically validated maturity model for the implementation of open government is presented. The model uses innovation diffusion theory as a theoretical backdrop. While the model is at odds with the unidimensional nature of the Lee & Kwak Open Government Maturity Model (Lee & Kwak, 2012), the findings suggest that the transformative processes predicted by various e-government maturity models are well at work. They result in increasingly integrated services, participative approaches and an emerging collaborative culture, accompanied by a break-up of proprietary data silos and their replacement by a commonly shared data infrastructure, allowing data to be freely shared, inter-linked and re-used. In order to put our findings into perspective, we take stock of earlier discussions and criticisms of e-government maturity models and offer a new take on the issue of stages-of-growth models in the field of e-government. The proposed approach rests on the assumption of an evolutionary model that is empirically grounded and allows for varying development paths.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Further Contribution)


Business School > Institute for Public Sector Transformation > Data and Infrastructure
Business School


Estermann, Beat0000-0003-3050-793X






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Date Deposited:

09 Aug 2019 14:54

Last Modified:

18 Dec 2020 13:28

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Uncontrolled Keywords:

e-government, Maturity model, Cultural heritage, Open government, Open data, Crowdsourcing, Innovation, diffusion




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