Innovative use of Geographic Information Systems to facilitate collaboration between the government and citizens
Lasse Berntzen, Renate Steinmann, Alenka Krek (2005): Innovative use of Geographic Information Systems to facilitate collaboration between the government and citizens In: eChallenges 2005, Ljubljana, Slovenia
Abstract: Development of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) has reached a mature stage. One common option is web-based access. This feature makes it possible to use GIS as a tool for enhancing democracy, enabling transparency, and providing new services. Within the scope of our study we use the OECD model which provides a framework of categorizing different levels of interaction between citizens and government. We have extended this model by introducing an additional level, named collaboration. The extended model distinguishes among information delivery, consultation, collaboration, and participation. We provide some practical examples of web-accessible GIS applications in order to demonstrate their functionalities and the level of interaction. We then demonstrate an innovative approach of how GIS can be used to achieve active collaboration, where citizens and the government work together to develop new maps, which benefit both parties. This idea includes the establishment of “map hostels” and a web-based interface that allows voluntary organizations and citizens to provide their own map data for public consumption. We conclude the paper with some suggestions for our further research.