PROceedings Paper Abstract

Eric Welch, Shelley Fulla. "A Theoretical Framework for Describing Effects of Virtual Interactivity between Government and Citizens: The Chicago Police Department's Citizen ICAM Application." Paper prepared for delivery at the 2002 Annual Meeting of the American Political Science Association, Boston, August 29-September 1, 2002.

Paper (requires Acrobat Reader)

Keywords: Virtual Interactivity, Internet, Electronic Government


This paper considers the current efforts to describe the effect of Internet-based technology on interactivity between citizens and public organizations to be incomplete and poorly linked. This paper develops a model of interactivity that reflects the self-organization potential of virtual communication and the social context within which citizens and bureaucrats operate. The model helps us to identify ways in which different levels of feedback communication, e.g., email, may affect change in organizations, communities, and the relationship between organizations and communities. A case analysis of the Chicago Police Department's (CPD) Citizen ICAM is reviewed to determine the effects of feedback and the technology on the organization. We find that virtual interactivity is a complex process - more complex than typically described - that has significant effects on the structure and work processes of the CPD. We conclude by proposing a staged model of citizen-government interactivity and by identifying future research directions.

Contact the author regarding the paper.

(c) 2002 American Political Science Association. Contact proceedings@apsanet.org.