Government Information Quarterly

Published by Elsevier
Online ISSN: 0740-624X
Publications
Article
"The U.S. Bureau of the Census created the State Data Center program in 1978 to improve public access to census information. This article discusses the background, structure, and services of that program; the role of libraries in the program; and future directions in State Data Center/library relationships. The appendix lists contact person names, as well as addresses and telephone numbers for State Data Center lead agencies."
 
Article
PIP This article describes the U.S. Census Bureau's TIGER (Topologically Integrated Geographic Encoding and Referencing) system, an automated geographic data base. The emphasis is on the availability of file extracts and their usefulness to data analysts. In addition to describing the available files, it mentions various applications for the data, explains the data limitations, and notes problems encountered to date.
 
Article
PIP This paper describes the new and inexpensive technologies that have been developed at the U.S. Bureau of the Census in order to assist in data processing of census results in developing countries. The process of U.S. technical assistance in this field is described. The authors then consider differences and similarities in processing and producing census data. The article concludes with a discussion of the available technologies, including microcomputing software developed for the 1990 census round.
 
Article
This article explores how the post 9/11 climate has impacted Muslim-Canadians' information practices, including their uses of various information sources, and their attitudes and perceptions regarding their information rights in a post 9/11 world. A survey was conducted in 2004-2005 with 120 participants and supplemented by in-depth interviews. The population consisted of Muslim students enrolled in post-secondary institutions in Toronto, Ontario. The findings highlight Muslims' malaise in a post 9/11 environment; the deep mistrust they hold vis-à-vis the media; the importance they give to media and information literacy skills for all; as well as a call for increased introspection inside the Muslim community(ies). The study contributes to shedding light on a community that has often being talked and written about but not often heard. By soliciting Muslim individuals' perspectives, we enable them to voice their opinions about how the 9/11 events impacted on their lives and how their information practices inform their experiences.
 
Article
This article provides a preliminary assessment of the impact of the September 11, 2001, attacks on public and private information infrastructures. As the events of the day demonstrated, information technology promises to play a critical role in future homeland security initiatives. Over the past two decades, information technology has become increasingly integrated into the day-to-day operations of most organizations. The dependability and continuity of information infrastructures can be a determining factor of how well an organization will be able to respond to a catastrophic event. The article considers some of the lessons learned from September 11 as both government and business move forward to rebuild and reinforce their technology assets. Although many lessons can be identified, they emphasize three general principles: the establishment and practice of comprehensive continuity and recovery plans, the decentralization of operations, and the development of system redundancies to eliminate single points of weakness.
 
Article
Measuring the increase in racial diversity in the United States has received growing interest for the last three decades. The topic was of concern to the founding fathers, who categorized inhabitants using such terms as “White,” “free person,” or “slave.” We continue to categorize people by race.This article examines decennial census questionnaires, enumerator instructions, and actual categories used to define the race groups in this country from 1790 to the present to document the country’s efforts to categorize its racial populations. The influence of political and social conditions will become obvious as we journey through the archives of census schedules and enumerator instructions on how people have been categorized racially in this country.
 
Article
The Annual Reports of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for the years 1824 through 1920, described the interactions between the American Indian tribes and the federal government. J. A. Jones (Jones, J. A. (1955). Key to the annual reports of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs. Ethnohistory, 2, 58–64). Provided a key to these documents found in the United States Congressional Serial Set, but this tool contained a number of errors. This article provides a fresh look at this key, with particular focus upon the availability of these materials through the Readex Serial Set digital collection.
 
Article
Strategies are systematic and long-term approaches to problems. Federal, state, and local governments are investing in the development of strategies to further their e-government goals. These strategies are based on their knowledge of the field and the relevant resources available to them. Governments are communicating these strategies to practitioners through the use of practical guides. The guides provide direction to practitioners as they consider, make a case for, and implement IT initiatives. This article presents an analysis of a selected set of resources government practitioners use to guide their e-government efforts. A selected review of current literature on the challenges to information technology initiatives is used to create a framework for the analysis. A gap analysis examines the extent to which IT-related research is reflected in the practical guides. The resulting analysis is used to identify a set of commonalities across the practical guides and a set of recommendations for future development of practitioner guides and future research into e-government initiatives.
 
Article
This article is based on a symposium held at the University of California, Berkeley, and sponsored by the Library, University of California, Berkeley; the Librarians Association of the University of California (Berkeley Division); and the School of Library and Information Studies, University of California, Berkeley. The author examines government information controls in the context of the constitutional and statutory tradition of open access to government information in the United States. He discusses the restrictive climate in which the Reagan administration views public access and warns that restrictive national security policies may actually curtail economic growth, retard defense programs, and undermine the Constitution.
 
Article
This article assesses the value of the Government Printing Office's (GPO) 1983 Biennial Survey as a tool to support depository library program planning and decision making. Based on overall criteria of reliability, validity, and utility, much of the data produced from the survey are inaccurate, misleading, and inappropriate both as a means to (1) describe the depository libraries, and (2) assist GPO and individual depository library decision making and planning. Recommendations are offered by which the Biennial Survey can be better designed, administered, and analyzed.
 
Article
Throughout 1990 the Energy Information Administration (EIA) provided continuous data and analytic support to Congress during its deliberations on Title IV of the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990 (CAA). This effort called for the pooling of information from a wide variety of sources about utility fuel use, capacity, generation, plant configurations, and other operational data. It also called for extensive analytic effort to estimate the impacts of the provisions of the CAA on the electricity and coal markets. After the CAA was enacted in November 1990, EIA assisted the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in the development of the National Allowance Database. EIA compiled data for all utility fossil-steam power plants operating from 1985 through 1987, and new utility units that have announced plans to come on line by December 31, 1995. The EPA will use these data to calculate the final allocation of sulfur dioxide (SO2) emission allowances among all affected generating units in the United States. This process illustrates how an independent government statistical agency, while not directly involved in policy formulation, can provide support and assistance to policymakers in the development and implementation of laws.
 
Article
In this article, we outline our projections for NASA scientific and technical information (STI) in the 1990s. NASA STI for the 1990s will maintain a quality bibliographic and full-text database, emphasizing electronic input and products supplemented by networked access to a wide variety of sources, particularly numeric databases.STI for the 1990s will build on the accomplishments of the 1980s. Although budgetary realities are a constraint, there is much we can accomplish by applying new technology creatively. The changes now in process will provide a springboard for further change.
 
Article
This article reports on the fifth interagency conference. Summaries of previous conferences have appeared in volume 9, number 2 (1992): 187–198; volume 10, number 2 (1993): 237–253; volume 10, number 4 (1993): 461–476; volume 11, number 1 (1994): 89–125.
 
Article
The continuing transformation of our society by information technology presents many opportunities to improve government operations and services. Unfortunately, significant management improvements are required for Federal agencies to take advantage of those opportunities and to avoid wasting billions of taxpayer dollars. Enactment of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (P.L. 104-13) represents congressional endorsement of a revised approach to information resources management (IRM). The question is whether agencies will be able to discipline themselves to manage their information resources to improve program performance as required by the Act—and as increasingly demanded by Congress, the President, and the public. This article reviews the origins of IRM in the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1980, the Act's implementation and its 1995 reauthorization of appropriations, and current challenges confronting IRM.
 
Article
In contrast to the private-led initiative typified by the U.S. Information Superhighway project in the early 90s, the Korean government was in the forefront of directing the Korean Information Infrastructure (KII) project (1995–2005), which was aimed at building a nationwide broadband backbone network. This study first looks at how the developmental mechanism of Korea during the KII project signifies the weaker status of the civilian government of the 90s. This study then shows how in the KII project, the government served primarily as a moderator mediating conflicts between the private sector and the relevant public agencies. To describe the close state–capital linkages in the KII project, this study focuses on the government's financial investment system for enticing the private sector to install the IT infrastructure, the neatly coordinated policy networks between the public and private entities, and the policy discourses by which the government achieved a national consensus on IT-driven economic development.
 
Article
This paper challenges the view that strategies for using Web 2.0 should primarily be based upon technological characteristics. The value of the organizational strategic alignment approach for developing specific operational Web 2.0 strategies for government organizations is explored both theoretically and empirically. On the basis of a review of the literature we conclude that there are no a priori reasons why the idea of a fit between IT strategy and business strategic orientation cannot be applied to the development of operational Web 2.0 strategies for government organizations. The empirical exploration based on intervention research at the Dutch Department of Education results in the identification of five configurations: organizational transparency, organizational interactions, policy sector transparency, policy sector interactions and process and policy innovation. These configurations are logically consistent with the strategic orientations of the three directorates of the Department of Education. This overview does not pretend to be exhaustive but validates the idea that an alignment approach leads to differences in operational strategies. The configuration approach provides organizations with useful a starting point for developing their Web 2.0 strategies.
 
Article
The successful implementation of community surveys often requires the participation of leaders and organizations in the planning and coordination phases. This article highlights the U.S. Census Bureau’s partnership and marketing model for Census 2000. Focus in particular is placed on the Bureau’s efforts to work with national and local organizations in preparing the country’s diverse population for the next decennial count.
 
Article
The Internet has changed the way that people look for and obtain statistical information. The Internet will be the primary means by which the Census Bureau releases Census 2000 data, making more data available to the public than ever before. But information also will be available in other media such as print and CD-ROM.
 
Article
By analyzing the contrasting stories between the CDMA case and the IMT-2000 case in Korea, this paper examines the conditions for government intervention in information technology standardization. In these two cases, although the government had tried to induce information technology innovation by using de jure standardization, different results occurred. In the CDMA case, the government led the overall innovation process by getting compliance from private companies, whereas in the IMT-2000 case, the government faced resistance from private companies and, thus, did not achieve the intended results for information technology innovation. Why did similar standardization policies applied to similar cases bring about different results? From empirical evidence, we conclude that the success of government intervention in de jure standard-setting in information technologies is contingent on the following conditions: (1) technological conditions, related to technology knowledge and technology cycle; (2) market conditions, concerned with market governance structure and market prospects for technology; and (3) conditions for government capability, which provide technology knowledge and guarantee the technology market. All those conditions are the variables in determining a government-friendly environment and securing more compliance from private enterprises in information technology innovation through de jure standard-setting.
 
Article
Internet diffusion is not homogeneous and depends on many factors. This study uses data from the Canadian Internet Use Survey (CIUS) to explore the extent demographic variables affect Internet use by individuals in Canada. A logistic model confirms that certain factors, educational attainment, and geography in particular influence Internet use in Canada, controlling for age and income. Education maintains a strong, significant impact on Internet use such that the odds of using the Internet are about three times greater for someone who has some post-secondary education than someone who has, at most, a high school education. An urban–rural digital divide persists in Canada with the odds of using the Internet being almost one-and-a-half times greater for someone who lives in an urban area. While language also has a large effect on Internet use, the presence of children in households no longer seems to be a significant factor. This study thus underscores the changing digital environment in Canada and the need for adaptive, flexible policies addressing national connectivity issues and, in particular, broadband Internet availability.
 
Article
This paper explores issues surrounding the development of the ERIC dataset as it enters the 21st Century. The central theme that runs throughout the analysis is the need for the dataset and the rich, growing array of Clearinghouse services to be integrated to provide a single end-user window into ERIC.
 
Article
Official statistical offices are often included in government moves to charge users for services. In New Zealand, the change from operating a public statistical service fully funded by government to competing in a contestable economic market has presented a wide range of challenges. Statistics New Zealand—the country's national statistics office—has found that this change has tested its ability to provide services that users will pay for. It has also caused the service to look closely at the interaction between the commercial market and the other, more traditional markets of the service. It is the government and public markets that drive the values of national statistical offices throughout the world. However, it is the move into the commercial market that is now leading to greater consumer responsiveness in both commercial and publicly-funded services, more effective rationing by price and other determinants, and greater promotion of services.
 
Article
Interoperability refers to a property of diverse systems and organizations enabling them to work together. The current exchanges are, however, often inefficient and error-prone. Improved interoperability between public organizations as well as between public and private organizations is of critical importance to make digital government more successful. In this paper, a model of maturity levels for interoperability in digital government is presented. The five-level model might be applied by public organizations to identify current maturity and future direction for improved interoperability.
 
Article
This paper discusses the factors affecting the adoption of electronic tax-filing systems. Using the technology acceptance model (TAM) as a theoretical framework, this study introduces “perceived credibility” as a new factor that reflects the user's intrinsic belief in the electronic tax-filing systems, and examines the effect of computer self-efficacy on the intention to use an electronic tax-filing system. Based on a sample of 260 users from a telephone interview, the results strongly support the extended TAM in predicting the intention of users to adopt electronic tax-filing systems. The results also demonstrate the significant effect that computer self-efficacy has on behavioral intention through perceived ease of use, perceived usefulness, and perceived credibility. Based on the findings of this study, implications for electronic tax filing in particular and for e-government services in general are discussed. Finally, this paper concludes by discussing limitations that could be addressed in future studies.
 
Article
Between the years 1855 and 1863, the opinions or “reports” of the United States Court of Claims were delivered to the House of Representatives for final consideration. In total, 296 cases were conveyed, but in the process, Report 42 was lost and, according to indexes of such documents, “never received by [the] House.”This article cites examined records of the Court of Claims, from both the United States Congressional Serial Set and original documents now in the National Archives, which support the contention that there was a completed opinion for Court of Claims Report 42 that was lost sometime during its transfer between the Court and the House.This 150-year-old case – Letitia Humphreys, Administratrix of Andrew Atkinson – was one in a long list of judicial proceedings, involving over 100 claimants, that resulted from the 1812 invasion of Florida by the United States, and that concerned the payment of interest to those compensated under the last clause of the ninth article of the 1819 Treaty of Amity, Settlement, and Limits, Between the United States of America and His Catholic Majesty. These Florida petitions were examples of early claims actions against the federal government, in many cases after decades of inaction.
 
Article
The free flow of academic information and ideas is essential to the operation of universities in the United States. Recent actions by some agencies of the federal government threaten to erode academic freedom by imposing requirements of prepublication review on government sponsored university research, restricting the access of foreign scholars to U.S. classrooms and laboratories, authorizing the secret classification of research projects after the research has been undertaken, and limiting the dissemination of sensitive but unclassified research information through a system of export controls. These regulatory policies tend to inhibit scientific innovation and intellectual exchange, and should be reconsidered before they do serious damage to important national interests.
 
Article
This article examines the development of the Alliance for Innovation in Science and Technology Information, a partnership among multitype libraries that support research in science and technology. Originally established in 1992 as the Library Services Alliance of New Mexico, the consortium has evolved from a six-member statewide group focusing on resource sharing to an international organization with 13 members, a business plan, new goals, and a new name to reflect its expanded geographical and philosophical scope. Using sound business practices, the Alliance strives to be an innovative leader in cyber sci/tech information, producing new models of scholarly communication.
 
Article
Resource allocation to documents departments in academic libraries is not a purely rational process. This lack of rationality leads to wide variation in the local levels of support upon which the GPO depository system depends. This article demonstrates these variations and suggests how documents librarians may change the levels of support their departments receive from sources within and beyond their libraries.
 
Article
Given the availability and distribution of posters from the Government Printing Office, it is likely that many Federal depository libraries contain sizeable poster collections. This article addresses the special needs of the depository library poster collection in the academic library, especially with regard to improving public awareness and access.
 
Article
This study assessed the use of “Personal Computer Technology” in public organizations of developing countries in South Asia, particularly in Pakistan [Qazi, R. (2006). Expanding the Technology Acceptance Model (TAM): A Consideration of Personal Computer Technology Use in Public Organizations of a Developing Country of South Asia, Pakistan (Doctoral dissertation, George Washington University, 2006). Dissertation Abstracts]. The study expanded the “Technology Acceptance Model” by adding additional external factors such as ‘Organizational Culture’ and ‘Individual Factors’ (e.g. ‘Level of Education’ and ‘Duration of Training’), and belief factors such as ‘Perceived Personal Utility.’ Financial compensation to employees was used as a control variable because preliminary data analysis showed that it explicitly differentiated results of the study between those employees who felt they were adequately rewarded (financially) and those who were not. For example, when respondents replied ‘Compensation’ was ‘Yes,’ i.e. that at least some level of direct compensation was provided for PCT utilization then a statistically significant, positive relationship between ‘Level of Education’ and ‘PCT Use’ was found. However, when respondents replied that ‘Compensation’ was ‘No,’ a statistically significant, negative relationship between ‘Level of Education’ and ‘PCT Use’ exists. Additional results of this study are presented in this article.
 
Article
This paper identifies the factors that determine the publics' acceptance of e-Government services. The online tax filing and payment system (OTFPS) is a well-known e-Government service in Taiwan. Using a theoretical model based on the theory of planned behavior, this study aims to (1) identify the determinants for acceptance of the OTFPS; (2) examine the causal relationships among the variables of acceptance behavior for the OTFPS; and (3) explore the relative importance of each determinant for both those who use the OTFPS and those who do not. The article reports on a survey that collected 1,099 usable responses. The results indicate that the proposed model explained up to 72 percent of the variance in behavioral intention. In addition, the important determinants of user acceptance of the OTFPS are perceived usefulness, ease of use, perceived risk, trust, compatibility, external influences, interpersonal influence, self-efficacy, and facilitating condition. Finally, the academic and practical implications of these findings are discussed.
 
Article
State legislative web sites should provide information to citizens that is useful and is easily accessible. Each state’s legislative web site was studied to find common usability issues in making legislative documents available on-line. Examples of how various state legislative web sites address each issue are provided. In conclusion, a model for an accessible, useful state legislative web site is proposed.
 
Article
A fundamental tenet of American democracy is that citizens have a basic right of access to information collected and produced by the Federal government. Contrary to general perception, however, a statutory right of public access to government information only goes back to 1966. Rapidly changing technologies, severe economic strains, and emerging policy issues now threaten to erode the right of public access to government information. The author describes a number of the key challenges to preserving public access and suggests a set of principles to serve as the basis of government information policies which will preserve a right of access to government information.
 
Article
There is much discussion in research literature regarding the information produced by inter-governmental organizations (IGOs) and what publications are available for use in libraries. At the same time, there is little discussion of the information policies of IGOs regarding access to IGO information. In fact, the freedom of information debate, with few exceptions, has not been extended to include IGOs. Although IGOs are made up of governmental bodies, the role of the IGO seems to be that of facilitator for state policy formation. This role fails to recognize that IGOs produce information of their own accord and make decisions which affect peoples in the member states. This article surveys the issue of access to IGO information and discusses how national debates can be extended to the IGO level. It shows both explicit and implicit information policies with case studies from the environmental information field: the European Union's (EU) directive on environmental information, and the Global Environment Facility (GEF). Three issues emerge: these are varying levels of access to IGO information, varying levels of IGO information policy, and a relative paucity of research on the subject. The principles of accountability, transparency, and public involvement are being made explicit more frequently in the documents of IGOs. However, a continuing gap between explicit and implicit policies must be bridged.
 
Article
Supported by the development of information technology, the Japanese government is facilitating access to its information and taking steps toward electronic government. The policy initiatives concerning access to government information are divided into five areas: promotion of IT use in internal administrative activities, the Information Disclosure Law, information provision, records management, and general policy toward information society. However, these policy initiatives do not reflect the needs of the citizen, and implementation of the policy is curtailed by the lack of leadership and coordination. In addition, the government still holds a monopoly over its information and has poor management over flow and storage of government information.
 
Article
As a result of the growing influence of supranational organizations, there is a need for a new model for subject access to government information in academic libraries. Rulings made by supranational bodies such as the World Trade Organization (WTO) and rulings determined under the auspices of transnational economic agreements such as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) often supersede existing law, resulting in obligatory changes to national, provincial, state, and municipal legislation. Just as important is the relationship among private sector companies, third party actors such as nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), and governments. The interaction among the various entities affected by supranational rulings could potentially form the basis of a new model for subject access to government information.
 
Article
The Federal government is relying increasingly on private sector firms to provide access for the general public to information being made available in electronic formats. This practice has raised the question whether an “information rich vs. information poor” class distinction is being created among taxpayers. The definition of the “public” for particular types of information has also been raised.This article addresses the question of equitable access to electronic government information in one subject area, agriculture, where the Federal government has historically exercised a strong, proactive role in information dissemination. Issues considered include the impact of electronic technologies on existing dissemination structures, the Reagan era policy shift toward privatization of information dissemination, and factors influencing agriculturalists' abilities to access electronic information. A user-centered definition of the agricultural “information public” is then offered. Finally, recommendations are presented for agencies to expand access to information in electronic formats without segmenting the user public along income lines.
 
Article
The research seeks to provide the audience and web designers with a higher level of awareness about the level of accessibility problems within the e-government sector, specifically a sampling of 130 sites of the UK members of Parliament. The study applies the results of an online accessibility testing tool to analyze the compliance levels of both UK disability law and Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG). The research also show which guideline errors are the most prevalent among the sites and raises awareness about the issues of access in e-government. Although the UK's Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) of 1995 provides equality in access of websites to people with disabilities, the results of this study show that total openness of sites to these customers is not widespread and the vast majority of sites display similar non-compliance errors among the guidelines. For each of these issues, there are published methods that web designers can implement to improve the accessibility rankings of their sites and provide greater openness to users with disabilities.
 
Article
On-line state legislative information should be equally accessible to all citizens. While state Web sites have been praised for aesthetic design and innovative services, access has rarely been examined despite the legal activity regarding Web site accessibility on the federal level. This study examined selected Web pages for each of the fifty states using a program that determined the number and type of barriers posed to users of assistive technology. Although some states have clearly made an effort to provide equal access to all, there were a number of examples of inaccessible Web sites. Even states that meet the minimum requirements for accessibility have not chosen to follow the full guidelines. As the amount of on-line information continues to increase, adopting accessibility guidelines will become even more crucial.
 
Article
This introductory essay provides an overview of the articles in this special issue. In addition, it provides a brief historical sketch of the development of GILS and offers several perspectives on the critical importance of metadata for resource description and resource discovery. Interoperability is presented as a key challenge in integrating access to the various government information locator services being deployed at state and Federal levels.
 
Article
This paper analyzes the relation between publishing public performance results on the Internet, stakeholder accountability, and the effectiveness and legitimacy of Dutch public service organizations. The empirical research focuses on Web sites with performance results of schools and hospitals. These results are published on the Internet by ‘third parties’ (government organizations, associations of public service organizations, and newspapers). Publications of performance results stimulate schools and hospitals to score better on performance indicators because they feel the ‘public eyes’ on them. However, the risk of a ‘performance paradox’ and adverse effects is great since strategic behavior may lead to higher scores but not improve the effectiveness of these organizations. The research provides moderate support for negative effects on the legitimacy of schools and hospitals which may be attributed to the sole use of the Internet as a medium for access to information and negligence of its communicative potential.
 
Article
An examination of the history of leprosy, or Hansen's disease, in the Territory of Hawaii is a clear window upon how the federal government addressed its fundamental responsibilities to an indigenous people of this nation. Over the years, and in particular prior to 1934, various federal agencies oversaw the array of this nation's territories, but the Department of the Interior was always accountable for those of Alaska and Hawaii. Each agency acquired annual reports from the assigned administrators of such areas. These federal documents offer a remarkable perspective of these diverse geographic locations, and contain data on aspects of local life that are difficult to find elsewhere. This article speaks specifically to the leprosy reports contained in the Annual Reports for the Territory of Hawaii, between 1900 and 1959.
 
Article
The collection and analysis of personal information under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) has been significantly altered by the U.S.A. Patriot Act, and a proposed enhancement to the Patriot Act would create further changes. This article examines the original intent and scope of FISA, how the Patriot Act has dramatically modified the scope and meaning of FISA, and how the Patriot enhancement, if it were to be enacted into law, would create further significant alterations to FISA. The article explores the impact of these changes on information policy, especially in terms of the collection and analysis of personal information. The implications of these changes to FISA are examined in terms of a number of sources of personal information, including e-government, electronic and transactional records, and libraries. Finally, this article discusses the difficulty in determining the practical effects of these changes to FISA.
 
Article
The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) has been administered by Federal departments and agencies for almost 30 years. Aspects of that administrative experience are discussed here. Never held in high regard or enthusiastically implemented by the Executive Branch, the FOIA and its effective operation owe much to Congress, which, after creating the statute, nurtured it through diligent oversight and legislative amendment. However, the FOIA has not received comprehensive congressional examination and evaluation for a decade. Not only might its existing procedures benefit from reassessment and upgrading, but also its capacity to contend with electronic formats is in question. Furthermore, the prospect of the statute being extended to cover Congress or possibly the entire Legislative Branch grows stronger, suggesting a need to begin discussions concerning the scope of the FOIA's application to congressional or Legislative Branch records and such new arrangements as may be necessary to facilitate effective operation of the law should this application be approved.
 
Article
This article examines Executive agency fee waiver guidelines for public interest requesters, including scholars, the media, and public interest groups, within the larger context of F.O.I.A.'s costs and benefits to the public. Information transmitted to the public by these requesters enhances citizen oversight of government activities and assists Congress in formulating public policy. However, arbitrary interpretation of the statute's fee waiver provision and the lack of standard and consistent fee waiver guidelines clearly inhibit use of the Act by public interest requesters. Continuing efforts by some Members of Congress and Executive agency personnel to further limit certain types of information available under the F.O.I. A. prompted renewed consideration of the economic aspects of Federal information policy in general and, in particular, the Freedom of Information Act.
 
Article
The key barrier to obtaining increased benefits from Federal scientific and technical information (STI) is a lack of Executive Branch leadership to coordinate Federal STI activities in an effort to enhance ease of access to users. There is a window of opportunity for an Administration initiative to improve access to Federal STI. In addition, technological opportunities exist for a significantly improved information infrastructure.A policy level inter-agency committee should be initiated to coordinate Federal STI activities. A goal needs to be set for the committee; that goal should be both achievable and beneficial, should encompass the plethora of detailed STI issues within it, and should be “flashy” enough to sell politically. In this way, the goal will provide a context for solving the many problems confronting the Federal STI system. This goal should be the long-term vision of a Federal technology information locator, the purpose of which the article discusses.
 
Article
Research into relationships among government, society and technology has grown substantially over the past 30 years. However, most research and most advances in practice address narrowly defined categories of concern such as government organization, citizen services, interoperability, or personal privacy. By contrast, the future presents complex and dynamic challenges that demand a more holistic and flexible perspective, including consideration of what constitutes an appropriate infrastructure for continued development of government and governance in the digital age. This paper outlines a conceptual framework for considering the future, drawn from a stakeholder-driven investigation into potential scenarios of society and government. The framework reflects a dynamic socio-technical system encompassing interactions among societal trends, human elements, changing technology, information management, interaction and complexity, and the purpose and role of government.
 
Article
As the largest single producer, consumer, and disseminator of information in the United States, the Federal government has enormous power to influence the development and diffusion of new information technologies. Through the use of electronic information systems, it also has the opportunity to make more government information readily available to more public users. Defining the appropriate uses of, and controls on, this power are of critical importance in determining whether the government will be a positive or a negative force, particularly with respect to the private sector. Although there has always been, and probably always will be, some competition between government and private sector information products and services, there is agreement that the laws and policies regulating government information practices do not, and should not, require or permit a Federal agency to provide information products and services in the same manner as a private company. Federal agencies must be careful not to exploit the power inherent in electronic data systems by providing nonessential services to the public simply because the capability to provide such services exists. Instead the government should assume an affirmative obligation to review each electronic information activity carefully in order to avoid unnecessary government interference in the marketplace for information products and services. Further, as the government becomes increasingly involved in the use of electronic collection and dissemination, it must also learn to differentiate among levels of service and requirements of various user communities. Positions of the Association of Research Libraries, the National Commission on Libraries and Information Science and the Information Industry Association are presented and are shown to be in surprising harmony with the policies of OMB Circular A-130 and the views of the House Committee on Government Operations. The Securities and Exchange Commission's EDGAR system and recent development in distribution og government information on CD-ROM are reviewed as examples of the implementation of these policies.
 
Article
Supplemental articles and supplementary treaties were used as tools to modify American Indian treaties. In general, supplemental articles were adjustments to the parameters of a treaty, frequently made as quickly as the same – or the next – day of negotiations, whereas the task of a supplementary treaty was to affect the conditions created in a previous treaty(s).As the law of the land, these materials have been referenced in the opinions of the federal, state, and territorial court systems. This article identifies those 80 documents – a combination of 39 initial treaties and their 41 supplements – cited in the opinions of 101 cases between 1831 and 2000 that bind together these instruments, their modifications, and their application within these various venues.
 
Article
Knowledge management can be a powerful tool for addressing the “graying of government” and other factors contributing to the loss of expertise in government organizations. This paper presents a case study of knowledge management at the U.S. Social Security Administration and provides recommendations for how knowledge management might better protect valuable knowledge resources. A two-phase study was conducted of the Benefit Rate Increase/Premium Amount Collectible (BRI/PAC), a core process at the U. S. Social Security Administration, where critical knowledge is at risk of being lost. The study suggests that knowledge sharing, training, and the overall development of a working environment conducive to knowledge management promise to enhance performance of the BRI/PAC operation, at SSA.
 
Top-cited authors
John Carlo Bertot
  • University of Maryland, College Park
Marijn Janssen
  • Delft University of Technology
J. Ramon Gil-Garcia
  • University at Albany, The State University of New York
Jungwoo Lee
  • Yonsei University
Yogesh Kumar Dwivedi
  • Swansea University