Towards a Framework for Assessing the Maturity of Government Capabilities for 'E-Government'

28 February 2016

The new reality of the 21st Century is characterised by increasing centrality of information and knowledge and pervasive application of new information and communication technologies (ICTs). The unavoidability of the new applications on the one hand, and their considerable complexity and costliness on the other, compel organisations to seek better understanding of these applications to guide their successful development and implementation. The ability to accurately establish and articulate needs and prioritise them on the basis of their potential benefits and challenges, within a framework of institutional capabilities, is an important dimension of this understanding. This is where assessment comes in. This paper proposes a framework for assessing the maturity of government capabilities for “e-government.” It first traces the conceptual development of e-government, noting a successive broadening of the conceptual scope and a shift in focus from technology to government. It reviews pertinent literature on “e-readiness” assessment and “capability maturity” assessments, noting their strengths and limitations in a government institutional environment. It proposes an e-government capability maturity assessment framework based on six capability factors (development and business agenda, ICT application portfolio, ICT infrastructure development, human and intellectual capital, governance and institutional infrastructure, and leadership and management), six levels of maturity (business as usual, online information services, on-line interactivity, on-line transactional services, service integration, and organisational transformation), and a mapping function that traces the logistic trajectory of resulting growth curves.