Can Open-Government Models Contribute to More Collaborative Ways of Governance?
The Greek political landscape and the way public administration and political procedures are performed is an ideal field of study of the enabling potential of the Internet to foster new, dynamic forms of democracy, introducing open and “citizen-friendly” forms of government mainly by functioning as a horizontal communication channel allowing polyphonic discussions as well as one-to-one dialogues.
As Greece is facing the most intense social, political and economic crisis of her history, a series of political issues over the last decade have caused widespread public mistrust, civic disengagement and finally a deep feeling of disappointment for the inefficiencies of public administration while corruption is a major problem in the country. In order to face this credibility deficit, and following European Union’s recommendations and worldwide trends, the Greek government has initiated a series of open government initiatives in an effort to address the lack of accountable leadership.
The objective of this chapter is to present the Greek OpenGov.gr case and its results as a top-down eParticipation effort. In parallel, this analysis intends to identify and discuss similarities, complementarities and differences between the concepts of eParticipation and open government in the sense that one of the major challenges for open government is to integrate a “deliberative-participatory element” into existing political structures and procedures.
KeywordseParticipation Open government Transparency Accountability Trust Openness Democratic process
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