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Challenges in E- governments: A case study-based on Iraq

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An effective and competent way to deliver business and organizational mandates is via deploying Information and Communication Technology (ICT). Parts of a government’s job is to benefit their citizens, they do so by using ICT to update any services or facilities. As well as this, E-Governments aim to make citizens’ lives better in terms of society, politics, and economy. Governments move all of the administrations into “smart governments”. Unfortunately, some developing countries’ governments are unable to do such move due to several reasons. These include no interoperability of e-governments, little resources, and no management devotion. Thus, this work’s goal is to dedicate a framework of an e-government implementation for Iraq. Four main obstacles were identified for implementing e-governance in Iraq: political, technical, cultural, and legal. Examining the e-government implementation framework, opinions of 180 managers were received via an online survey. Most notably, there was no coordination between state instructions, lack of equipment’s for security, user lacking confidence, no information technology law and integrity. This study is unique and aims to develop a sufficient e-government in Iraq.
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Challenges in E- governments: A case study-based on Iraq
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Challenges in E- governments: A case study-based on Iraq
Noor A. Jasim1,3, Emad M. Hameed1 and Sarah A. Jasim2
1 Middle Technical University, Baquba Technical Institute, Iraq
2 Ministry of Education, General Director of Education, Diyala, Iraq
3 E-mail: nooraldarraji@mtu.edu.iq
Abstract. An effective and competent way to deliver business and organizational mandates is
via deploying Information and Communication Technology (ICT). Parts of a government’s job
is to benefit their citizens, they do so by using ICT to update any services or facilities. As well
as this, E-Governments aim to make citizens’ lives better in terms of society, politics, and
economy. Governments move all of the administrations into “smart governments”.
Unfortunately, some developing countries’ governments are unable to do such move due to
several reasons. These include no interoperability of e-governments, little resources, and no
management devotion. Thus, this work’s goal is to dedicate a framework of an e-government
implementation for Iraq. Four main obstacles were identified for implementing e-governance
in Iraq: political, technical, cultural, and legal. Examining the e-government implementation
framework, opinions of 180 managers were received via an online survey. Most notably, there
was no coordination between state instructions, lack of equipment’s for security, user lacking
confidence, no information technology law and integrity. This study is unique and aims to
develop a sufficient e-government in Iraq.
Keywords: Information and Communication Technology; E-Government; Management
commitment.
1. Introduction
As a result of the spread of the Covid-19 in the world and the disruption of life in all its facilities, it is
necessary to think about dispensing with paper transactions and moving towards electronic
transactions using the e- Government system.
Considering the alterations in organisational structures as well as information technology, the paths
used to work things out have raised the amount of information around. Moreover, brand new records
were formed presenting information in a totally distinguished way. Due to such theory, a lot of the
information that would be generated using paper, is now produced electronically, for instance, an
email in a database.
The phrase “E-Government” links to government agencies making usage of information and
communication technologies (i.e. Wide Area Networks, the Internet, and mobile computing). They can
move linkages with various businesses, parts of governments and lastly citizens. In turn, this would
increase the success of service delivery and improve both communication and cooperation for all
government departments [1]. Such technologies have significant benefits i.e. finer delivery of
government services, developed communication with both businesses and industries and finally citizen
empowerment via gaining information, or better government management. Summarizing, there would
be a reduction in corruption, increase in transparency, better convenience, revenue build-up and
reductions in price [1].
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Projects focusing on E-Governments began in mid-1990s across the globe where every country runs
its specified project. For example, [2] introduced the challenges for E-Governments in Jordon where
the researchers found some obstacles facing the application of E-Governments. It is noteworthy to
mention the education of digital divide, electronics, and bad communications infrastructure. A second
example, [3] outlining the state in Pakistan where these were the major challenges against E-
Governments: ICT Infrastructure, low ICT literacy, and professional workforce. A number of these
studies are found in the exploitation stage whereas others are in the design and prototyping stage. It is
believed that today’s society should switch to electronics. After research done, the significance of E-
Governments is realized where all of enterprises, public officers, citizens, government administrations
and agencies receive accurate information via a wide network [4]. A variety of limitations regarding
implementing successful electronic public facilities are discussed [5,6]. Whilst reviewing developing
countries, e-government projects are unsuccessful where a massive gap was noticed between
developed and developing countries [7, 8]. The failure of these projects is due to the lack of
appropriate resources as application of ICT is behind the expected. Bad ICT infrastructure, and
deficient Information Technology (IT) human capital to spearhead ICT development [7, 9]. All of the
following points affect the application of E-governments in developing countries: management aid,
organisational quantity, user friendly, compatibility, competitive demand, strategic relevance and IT
support infrastructure [9-12]. Considering the fact that E-government projects work for the long term,
integrative implementation framework pathway is required, especially in developing countries [5,13].
When starting an e-Government system, it is a necessary step for all users to be recognised. Four key
points regarding communities are found out which are as follows: Officeholder, Citizens, Government,
and Business. These points are used in the developing process of an e-Government system. Figure 1
presents a clear grouping of e- Government applications followed by some details for each e-
Government application [14]
Figure 1. A clear grouping system of E-Government applications [14].
1.1. Government-to-Officeholder e-Government (G-to-O e-Gov)
This type provides support to all the following: public affair organizations, intra-organizational
government officeholders, and lastly secondary organizations’ cooperative processes and methods of
public affairs.
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1.2. Government-to-Citizen e-Government (G-to-C e-Gov)
The G2C section consists of relationships between governments and their citizens occurring
electronically [1]. The final goal behind this is citizens connecting with their government from the
comfort of their houses. The application of G2C leads citizens to fill their curiosity and receive
answers regarding government agencies. Additionally, citizens can use services like E-Voting and e-
Assistance.
1.3. Government-to-Business e-Government (G-to-B e-Gov)
By being connected on a wide network, most businesses are familiar with the facilities offered by
governments. Secure pathways are ensured throughout so each business uses the facility via a legal
person’s identity. For instance, on-line customs declaration of goods or on-line clearance of goods
[15].
1.4. Citizen-to-Citizen e-Government (C-to-C e-Gov)
Here, the Government negotiates information according to the situation. For example, the government
solves any issues regarding citizens’ debates or provides short-term jobs to citizens that survived a
certain disaster. In turn, such citizens are able to work and earn a living. Concluding, the government
aids its citizens via manpower and information [14].
1.5. Business-to-Business e-Government (B-to-B e-Gov)
This section is like C-to-C e-Government application. This specific type is where the government has
a mediator part in negotiating information. For instance, business may bid on contracts consisting of
sensitive information, allowed by the government itself. Such businesses would be able to form things
like warships, tanks, and warplanes. All of these represent a country’s weaponry [14].
1.6. Citizen-to-Government e-Government (C-to-G e-Gov)
The formation of communities relying totally on electronics occurs as a result of citizens’ needs. These
needs are referred to demand aggregate driven. For instance, asking for assistance is something that
citizens can do, as well as recommending particular things to the citizenry [14].
1.7. Business-to-Government e-Government (B-to-G e-Gov)
This uses an alike application to C-to-G e-Government. However, here communities based on
electronics result from businesses’ needs. These needs are referred to demand aggregate driven. For
instance, businesses are able to ask for governmental patronage or schemes from various businesses
[14].
2. Methodology
The overall system architecture, as shown in Figure 2, consists of various clients’ communication
means such as smart-phone, tablet, laptop, Internet, and route. In other words, it means that the end-
user can either give his/her feedback via a computer or a mobile. In the case of a mobile, a wireless
router must be connected to the network to provide a connection to the mobile for adding more
flexibility to the user regarding the questionnaire.
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Figure 2. Proposed System Architecture for an E-government.
The researcher used a questionnaire as primary data to analyze the challenges in an E-government and
the extent of its applicability in government institutions.
A questionnaire contains different types of questions related to a specific field in order to cover
maximum information from individuals. Anyone can complete the questionnaire by either email or
telephone or using face-to-face interviews. A special type of questionnaires depends on the web,
which is a fast-growing and promising methodology. The method occurs when an e-mail or a message
is received for instance via social media requesting to click on a URL address that will direct the
person to a website to fill in a questionnaire form. For the sample, a huge number of users coming
from a pre-determined population of interest was chosen. Respondents were able to give demographic
data via a 5-point Likert rating scale.
When spotting potential research participants, a specified criterion is used. According to the findings,
male represented 46.7% of the sample whereas females represented 53.3%. This data is demonstrated
in Table 1.
Table 1. Gender Factor
Gender
Frequency
Percent (%)
Male
84
46.7
Female
96
53.3
Total
180
100.0
It was noted that all respondents outlined a tertiary qualification where 5.6% of them specified that
they are degree-holders, 94.5 % hold post-graduate qualifications distributed between master and
doctoral degrees as shown in Table 2.
Table 2. Education Factor.
Education
Frequency
Percent (%)
Bachelor’s degree
10
5.6
Master’s degree
88
48.9
Doctorate’s degree
82
45.6
Total
180
100.0
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In terms of age, 42.8 % of the respondents aged between 30 to 39 years old. 38% of them were
between 40 to 49 years old. Also, 10 % were between 20 to 29 years old. Lastly, 8.3% of them aged
equal or greater than 50 years old. This data is demonstrated in Table 3.
Table 3. Age Factor.
Age
Frequency
Percent (%)
20-29 years
18
10.0
30-39 years
77
42.8
40-49 years
70
38.9
50 years
15
8.3
Total
180
100.0
3. Case study analysis
This work aims to define obstacles through E-governments implementation. Data was analyzed
quantitatively and Tables (4,5,6,7) depict the beliefs of the 180 participants based on the questions
linked to the E-government.
Table 4. Political Impacts.
Very
unimportant
Somewhat
unimportant
Neutral
Somewhat
important
Very important
Frequency
Percent (%)
Frequency
Percent (%)
Frequency
Percent (%)
Frequency
Percent (%)
Frequency
Percent (%)
6
3.3
13
7.2
0
0
73
40.6
88
48.9
8
4.4
9
5.0
0
0
82
45.6
81
45.0
9
5.0
4
2.2
1
0.6
74
41.1
92
51.1
In the political impact, from viewpoints of the respondents, there is a variety of political problems that
need to be examined. Therefore, both facilities and procedures require specific reflection. The
respondents express of their opinions as follow:
A) 89 % claim lack of laws on E-government.
B) 90% claim lack of formulates security issues.
C) 92% claim absence of coordination between state instructions.
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According to above result, it is clear that the political impact has significant effect on E-government
applied, where in our study (Iraq) there is many political issues that make a challenge to applied the E-
government.
In additional, the results indicate that there is a significant correlation between political impacts with
values ranging from 0.427 to 0.532, and this indicates that political impacts are interrelated and
dependent on each other as shown in Table 5.
In order to make E-government applicable the decision maker should be improve the cooperation
between the difference government departments in order to make the transfer of files through internet.
This will be improving the E-government applied.
Table 5. Correlations matrix for political impacts.
Correlations
Lack of Laws
on E-
government
Lack of
formulate
security issues
Absence of
agreement
between state
institutions
Lack of Laws on E-
government
Pearson Correlation
1
.497**
.429**
Sig. (2-tailed)
.000
.000
Lack of formulate security
issues
Pearson Correlation
.497**
1
.532**
Sig. (2-tailed)
.000
.000
Absence of agreement
between state institutions
Pearson Correlation
.429**
.532**
1
Sig. (2-tailed)
.000
.000
**. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2-tailed).
Table 6. Technical Impacts.
Item
Very
unimportant
Somewhat
unimportant
Neutral
Somewhat
important
Very important
Frequency
Percent (%)
Frequency
Percent (%)
Frequency
Percent (%)
Frequency
Percent (%)
Frequency
Percent (%)
Unauthorized
access
3
1.7
18
10.0
0
0
77
42.8
82
45.6
Resource
manipulation
as system
4
2.2
14
7.8
0
0
86
47.8
76
42.2
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configuration
or
reprogramming
Lack of
equipment’s for
security
6
3.3
6
3.3
0
0
78
43.3
90
50.0
Availability of
technical staff
6
3.3
14
7.8
0
0
75
41.7
85
47.2
In the technical impact, citizens have a fear from the security side represented by a hacked E-
government system. The respondents express their opinions as follows:
A) 88% claim unauthorized access.
B) 90% claim Resource manipulation as system configuration or reprogramming.
C) 93% claim Lack of equipment’s for security.
D) 88% claim Availability of technical staff.
The result indicates that there is no control on the Internet used, this make the hacker to hack any
system easily, therefore, it is need from decision maker to legislation the laws that organize the using
of Internet. There is a significant correlation between technical impacts with values ranging from
0.311 to 0.632 and this indicates that technical impacts are interrelated and dependent on each other as
shown in Table. 7.
In order to overcome this challenge, it is preferred to planning and following specific policy that
required a huge investment for the purchase of hardware and software. Also, training and encourage
the government employee to use the Internet for there working. This may be improve the e-
government.
Table 7. Correlations matrix for technical impacts.
Correlations
Unauthorized access
Resource manipulation as
system configuration or
re-programming
Lack of equipment
for security
Availability
of
technical
staff
Unauthorized access
Pearson
Correlation
1
.632**
.441**
.311**
Sig. (2-tailed)
.000
.000
.000
Resource manipulation
as system configuration
or re-programming
Pearson
Correlation
.632**
1
.382**
.365**
Sig. (2-tailed)
.000
.000
.000
Lack of equipment for
security
Pearson
Correlation
.441**
.382**
1
.439**
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Sig. (2-tailed)
.000
.000
.000
Availability of
technical staff
Pearson
Correlation
.311**
.365**
.439**
1
Sig. (2-tailed)
.000
.000
.000
**. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2-tailed).
Table 8. Cultural Impacts.
Item
Very
unimportant
Somewhat
unimportant
Neutral
Somewhat
important
Very
important
Frequency
Percent (%)
Frequency
Percent (%)
Frequency
Percent (%)
Frequency
Percent (%)
Frequency
Percent (%)
Participant lacking
cognition of utilizing
information services
13
7.2
10
5.6
0
0
82
45.6
75
41.7
Participant lacking
confidence
3
1.7
6
3.3
0
0
73
40.6
98
54.4
Warning of
participant’s private
data
4
2.2
11
6.1
0
0
81
45.0
84
46.7
Supplying information to the public in a language that they understand and are comfortable with, and
generally, it is the local language.
In the cultural impact, low ICT literacy, is one of important factors that impact the E government
because it shows that people are not aware of technology of E-governments. The respondents express
their opinions as follows:
a- 87% claim participant lacked cognition of utilizing information services.
b- 95% claim participant lacked confidence.
c- 93.7% claim warning of participant’s private data.
In the culture impact, the result of the factors could be used interrupt that the people in the third world
such as Iraq. Lacked to knowledge and how to investigate the Internet to achieve their work.
Additionally, the lacked confidence this consider another challenge that faced the e-government
application in Iraq. There is a significant correlation between cultural impacts with values ranging
from 0.282 to 0.533, and this indicates that cultural impacts are interrelated and dependent on each
other as shown in Table 9.
In order to overcome this challenge, it is required to provide the information to the people using
Simple and understanding language.
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Table 9. Correlations matrix for cultural impacts.
Correlations
Difficulties
in using IT
equipment
Participant
lacking
cognition of
utilizing
information
services
Participant
lacking
confidence
Warning of
participant’s
private data
Difficulties in using IT
equipment
Pearson Correlation
1
.370**
.533**
.375**
Sig. (2-tailed)
.000
.000
.000
Participant lacking
cognition of utilizing
information services
Pearson Correlation
.370**
1
.325**
.282**
Sig. (2-tailed)
.000
.000
.000
Participant lacking
confidence
Pearson Correlation
.533**
.325**
1
.467**
Sig. (2-tailed)
.000
.000
.000
Warning of participant’s
private data
Pearson Correlation
.375**
.282**
.467**
1
Sig. (2-tailed)
.000
.000
.000
**. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2-tailed).
Table 10. Legal Impacts
Item
Very
unimportant
Somewhat
unimportant
Neutral
Somewhat
important
Very
important
Frequency
Percent (%)
Frequency
Percent (%)
Frequency
Percent (%)
Frequency
Percent (%)
Frequency
Percent (%)
Problems of network
crime
3
1.7
8
4.4
0
0
84
46.7
85
47.2
Lack of information
technology law
3
1.7
6
3.3
0
0
81
45.0
90
50.0
Integrity
3
1.7
11
6.1
0
0
52
28.9
114
63.3
In legal impact, citizens have a number of problems related to networking crime and impartiality. The
respondents express their opinions as follows:
a- 93% claim network crime issues.
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b- 95% claim disappearance of information technology law.
c- 92% claim integrity.
The result showed that all three factors related to legal impact high percentage as shown above , this
could be happen due to lacked of the awareness and misunderstanding the risks they may be occur due
to network crime .
There is a significant correlation between legal impacts with values ranging from 0.018 to 0.403 and
this indicates that legal impacts are interrelated and dependent on each other as shown in Table. 11.
Table 11. Correlations matrix for legal impacts.
Correlations
Network crime
issues
Disappearance
of information
technology law
Integrity
Problems of network crime
Pearson Correlation
1
.352**
.180*
Sig. (2-tailed)
.000
.015
Lack of information
technology law
Pearson Correlation
.352**
1
.403**
Sig. (2-tailed)
.000
.000
Integrity
Pearson Correlation
.180*
.403**
1
Sig. (2-tailed)
.015
.000
**. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2-tailed).
*. Correlation is significant at the 0.05 level (2-tailed).
4. Conclusions
E- government is an effective and competent way to deliver business and organisational mandates is
via deploying Information and Communication Technology (ICT). The phrase “E-Government” links
to government agencies making usage of information and communication technologies (i.e. Wide Area
Networks, the Internet, and mobile computing). They can move linkages with various businesses, parts
of governments and lastly citizens. In this study some issues and challenges that faced the local
authorities during E-government implementation was highlighted. These challenges include political,
technical, cultural, and legal and each one of these challenges has specific weight. The result indicates
that these factors are related to each other and that any improvement or development of a factor will
influence the whole system. In order to help the decision maker to overcome these challenges, the
priorities of these challenges should be defined. These include work on electronic literacy, the ability
to formulate laws for E-governments, provide digital security, and distribute confidence among
citizens and institutions to deal with the digital revolution represented by an E- government. In order
to achieve and apply E- government successfully, the government should be tried to solve the
problems and provide the infrastructure that consider necessary to apply E-government. Additionally,
more research in this field which related to other factors that effect on E-government implementation
should be done.
For further research on this topic, it is advised to study greater determinants that impact E-
governments, as well as searching for the possibility of developing the system in Iraq.
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