EDemocracy & eGovernment: Stages of a Democratic Knowledge Society

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Your rating has been recorded. Write a review Rate this item: 1 2 3 4 5. Preview this item Preview this item. A process-oriented layer model defines the options of exchange and participation forall claim groups covering these topics: eAssistance, eProcurement, eService, eContracting, eSettlement, eCollaboration, eDemocracy, and eCommunity.

Case studies show practical applications in industry, administration and research. The book is well suited for students in Business, Economicsand Political Sciences courses as well as for practitionersinterested in the opportunities of digital exchange and participation in the knowledge society. Read more The principle distinguishes between three concepts, although they obviously overlap:.

Current situation in the EU. Since , the Commission has been particularly focused on e-participation and e-governance. It already carries out public consultations and impact assessments online, mainly before proposing draft legislation, in order to increase public participation and improve European governance. These processes could be improved if new technologies were more accessible and more widely used, with a view to involving all stakeholders in the policy development life cycle and strengthening European governance.

ICT could also help expand and develop both eGovernment, as a way to move towards a more participatory and deliberative form of democracy, and digital participation, as a part of the digital single market strategy. Adopting new technologies could lead to more widespread use of this new instrument and improve some technical issues such as the online system for collecting signatures.

E-Democracy: great prospects or potential risks? New communication technologies have enormous potential for fostering citizen participation in the democratic system and, as a way of building a more transparent and participatory democracy, should be regarded as a public good. Their transformative power should not be restricted to electoral processes, but should be extended to all aspects of civic participation in political processes, in particular to three forms of interaction between levels of government and citizens: online information and digital consultation and decision-making.

This aspiration should not, however, cause us to disregard the risks associated with the new technological age or to forget that technology is never an end in itself but rather a means of addressing the aforementioned issues. In particular, we should take into account:. In many countries, however, there are still areas without Internet access and all societies have huge sectors of the population that do not have the technical skills for Web use the digitally illiterate.

Since absolute data security is impossible, privacy can be undermined. This is a particularly sensitive issue for the public. Democratic procedures generally require extensive debate and the reconciliation of various viewpoints. The Internet is not always the ideal place for rational deliberation and getting to the bottom of arguments. It is not always possible, online, to distinguish between public opinion and viewpoints that seem to be held by the majority because of the role played by the most active Internet users.

A possible way forward. Experts, institutions, governments and the general public have made several suggestions and recommendations.

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The rapporteur, after extensive debate with his colleagues, believes that the following proposals might form part of his report and be addressed at European as well as at national level:. ICT should facilitate access to information, transparency, active listening, debate and, therefore, it could help bridge the gap between the public and better decision-making. It should also facilitate accountability, etc. In conclusion, it should be stressed that technical innovations will not in and of themselves solve public disaffection in politics or effect meaningful change in our democracies.

The reasons for this crisis are deep-seated and concern the policies implemented, together with increasing globalisation and growing dissatisfaction with the functioning of European democratic systems and their institutions.

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Rapporteur: Isabella Adinolfi. The Committee on Culture and Education calls on the Committee on Constitutional Affairs, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions into its motion for a resolution:. Acknowledges the continuous and swift technological changes occurring in the information society, the deep transformations these changes have brought about within society as a whole, with particular regard to educational and citizenship aspects, and the challenges and opportunities related to the various ICT tools, new media and other new technologies; to this end, encourages the development of criteria for assessing the added value of online engagement;.

Notes that an increasing number of citizens use ICT tools and new media and technologies to obtain an ever-wider variety of information, to exchange viewpoints, and to make their voices heard, engaging and participating in political life and collective decision-making, at local, national and EU level; considers, therefore, that it is crucial to increase digital inclusion and literacy, thus eradicating the existing digital divide which is a major obstacle for the exercise of active citizenship;.

Recalls that the participation of citizens in the democratic decision-making process through the use of ICT tools requires a legal enabling environment guaranteeing the right to privacy, freedom of expression and independent information, as well as investments by means of which citizens equipped with adequate media and digital literacy and skills can be enabled to enjoy full and equal access to a high-performance ICT technical infrastructure;. Recalls that it is necessary to introduce ambitious technical standards for the whole Union that aim to substantially and effectively reduce the existing digital divide, in accordance with the specific situation of the different Member States; underlines the need to ensure equal access for all to an affordable, inclusive, fair and safe internet, where freedom of expression, the right to privacy, with particular regard to the protection of personal data, and the principle of net neutrality are protected, as well as equal access to public online and e-identification services; accordingly, calls on the Commission and the Member States to take into consideration all relevant physical, geographical, and social barriers to online participation, regardless of income or social and personal condition, especially in less accessible areas and avoiding any kind of discrimination as provided for in Article 21 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights;.

Believes that ICT tools and new media and technologies are crucial and will increasingly play a significant role in synergy with offline channels, in order to enhance the sense of belonging to the EU, civic engagement, and social inclusion, and to provide balanced information and knowledge about the EU, its history and values and fundamental rights, in order to stimulate critical thinking and constructive public debate about the European Union;.

Notes that e-democracy has the potential to increase the sense of ownership of the EU among the citizens, which is especially important in the current Eurosceptic climate;. Notes that while ICT tools offer wide access to different sources of information, they also facilitate the spread of low-quality content which can be hard to distinguish from serious and reliable sources and can be misleading for citizens; underlines, therefore, the crucial need for proper media literacy training aimed at citizens, especially young people;.

Calls for caution as online political debates often produce excessively polarised opinions and can be prone to hate speech, whereas moderate voices are often overlooked;. Acknowledges that e-Democracy can only have a positive impact when citizens are well-informed, have the skills to be critical towards wrong and biased information, and are able to identify attempts at propaganda;.

Acknowledges that the above-mentioned risks and goals pose huge challenges for teachers and educators, in formal, non-formal and informal settings; calls, accordingly, on the Union and its Member States to increase investment in their lifelong training and development, combining online and offline methods, stimulating peer learning, exchange of best practices and capacity-building, and creating opportunities to learn and teach in an innovative, inclusive and non-discriminatory way;. Stresses that the EU and its Member States, should, particularly at regional and local level, promote ICT-based lifelong learning programmes on digital literacy and inclusion and civic engagement and participation, developing actions and policies, including research, making them readily accessible to the most vulnerable citizens, especially girls and women, LGBTI citizens, people with disabilities and other socially disadvantaged categories and minorities; highlights that such programmes should be designed and used in the interest of all citizens, at the same time addressing and raising awareness of cyber bullying, stigmatisation and other forms of online violence, and exclusion from political life, while avoiding division and discrimination within society;.

Emphasises that women are under-represented in political decision-making at all levels, as well as in ICT sectors; notes that women and girls often face gender-stereotypes in relation to digital technologies; therefore calls on the Commission and Member States to invest in targeted programmes which promote ICT education and e-participation for women and girls, particularly those from vulnerable and marginalised backgrounds, using formal, informal and non-formal learning; Notes the fundamental importance of digital inclusion for persons of all ages, and calls on the Commission to fully exploit to this end ICT tools and new media and technologies for motivating positive online dynamics that contribute to human development, peace and human rights; considers that, also in this context, e-Democracy tools can help to reduce the democratic deficit and the decline of political participation in the Union, and to facilitate engagement and participation in the public sphere; asks for the designing of initiatives specifically addressed to the young generation, and also to the elderly since both are affected by the generation gap; calls for the development of a critical approach to the use of such technologies in order to protect people and particularly children from all related risks;.

Recalls that involving the citizens further in the processes around the European policies has the potential to renew their support for the European Union while reducing the democratic deficit in the Union; underlines, therefore, the potential of e-Democracy tools to this end, while also acknowledging the inherent limitations arising from their requirements, both on a technical level high level of internet penetration, widespread Wi-Fi connectivity, high speed internet connection, etc and on a practical level media and digital literacy and skills, languages available, etc ;.

Considers it crucial that the Union and the Member States should conduct a strategic reflection in order to develop and launch e-Democracy tools that are able to provide a wider variety of sources disseminating independent and reliable information, to support open and innovative models of learning, taking into consideration European cultural and linguistic diversity and the specific interests of minority groups, to improve the quality of public debate, to encourage civic participation in decision-making processes, and to stimulate their active political engagement through participatory and direct democracy mechanisms that are able to strengthen and, where relevant, complement representative democracy;.

Calls on the Commission to develop and implement specific pilot projects, as provided for in the Digital Agenda, as well as to continue its support through other relevant EU funds and programmes, such as Europe for Citizens, with an emphasis on the mobility and participation of young people, with the aim of promoting and strengthening responsible and active European citizenship schemes, in order to truly consolidate democracy as a political and social experience which needs to be learned, lived, shared and embraced;.

Date adopted. Substitutes under Rule 2 present for the final vote.

eDemocracy & eGovernment : Stages of a Democratic Knowledge Society (eBook, ) [marediwilkey.ml]

Helmut Scholz, Barbara Spinelli. Corrections to vote. Document stages in plenary.

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