1.1 Background of the Study
For centuries men have tried using different methods and toolsto carry out their work, to make it more efficient and faster, thusfor more than four decades we have spoken of the concept ofthe Paperless office.
The Paperless office should be seen as an immediate project within organizations and constitutes an initiative of great interest for the application of new technologies in management,and good environmental practices can contribute to sustainable development.
The Paperless office concept means a change in how the technology industry, for information and management, is a”new way of working in the company”. This undoubtedly bringsother considerations, paradigms and feature works which ultimately impact the labor in all areas of business. The SMEs or large enterprises need technology, not only for the provision of accurate information for which solutions were developed, butalso in its implementation phase, which impacts on theoperation of the organization and how it is arranged.
Technology, it is true, provides answers, but it is undeniable that the solution for a successful company is not likely to be thesame as for another, although its organizational structure,business, industry and characteristics are similar.
Currently, systems theory and cybernetics offers different organizational models or schemes applied in the company toprovide features or functionality, as appropriate for the type ofindustry and business in which it performs; for example, theCatholic Church which has a predominantly hierarchicalstructure formed by the Pope, then the Cardinals, then thearchbishops, and so on, cannot benefit from a structure processin the same way as in a company that is in the business ofsoftware development; as their needs and responsecharacteristics and operations are completely different.
However, there is something similar as both types of companieshandle information. Regardless of their organizational structureor line, information flows, and serves as a basis for support indecision-making. Information should be stored safely, as it serves as evidence for any unforeseen event that the company requires.
The development of any project needs to follow a logicalsequence of actions to achieve certain guarantees of success inthe implementation. A good starting point is to reflect on thestrategy, initial conditions and goals to be achieved. It is also important to consider the institutional reality and related items such as infrastructure, regulations or policies, human andfinancial resources. To establish an action plan its key is to leadefforts in the same direction and define from the outset the responsibilities and commitment of the parties involved, the deadlines, budget, etc. All this allows facing the new concept ofa Paperless office, within each organization.
Concepts such as Information and Communications Technology(ICT), e-Government and Information Society are increasinglyused by many sectors of society.
Moreover, the Paperless office may be considered a new term within a world that still uses paper to support multiple activities,but is changing with the introduction of ICT and e-government.
Technological advances have changed the way people go about their daily activities.
Whether we are checking our e-mails or texting or sending messages with our phones, mobile communication is growing, and our ability to navigate the World Wide Web is improvingdramatically. We use the internet to shop on-line, do banking transactions, book for our flighttickets and make payment on-line, check the weather, do research on any subject and connectwith network. You may wonder what this has to do with public administration. As Internet usagegrows, and the use of technology in general grows, so too does the use of technology and Internet by government. E-governance is the general term used to describe the government’s use of technology in performing its multiple responsibilities (Holzer and Schwester, 2011). This chapter is meant to develop student’s knowledge and understanding on how government servicesare performed through the modern technology.
E-governance in the Public Sector/Electronic Governance and Administration is very relevant in the discourse on modern usage of technology in the world of public administration.
This chapter will enable you come to the knowledge of the shifting paradigm in public service delivery via information and communication technology (ICT). The shift is not only on servicedelivery but also on the way citizens participate in policy-making process through the tools ofonline engagement. The chapter is aimed at acquainting the reader with the knowledge in theworld of electronic governance (e-governance) in the public sector. The chapter is premised onthe knowledge that technology and service levels are intimately interwoven factors in theemerging e-Government services. The chapter is therefore designed to update your knowledge on the shifting role of how services are delivered through the use of Information and
Communication Technology (ICT). To ensure that this aim is achieved, some important background information will be provided and discussed.
– Conceptualising the terms e-governance and e-administration;
_ Discuss the principles and objectives of e-governance and e-administration;
_ Examine and discuss types of service delivery in e-governance and e administration;
_ Discuss the major administrative and democratic improvements of e-governance.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
The primary purpose of paperless in government is to improve quality of life ofcitizens, to do this, ministries, departments and agencies are established to provide services to the people. For the citizen, public institution likethe university has a social obligation to render service and thereforehave a legitimate expectation to LBE provided with good serviceswithout a commercial motive. Often because of the nature of servicethey are meant to provide, public institutions have no real competitionand the citizen has no choice but to use government services. It is so with universities.
A cursory look at public organizations indicates that service delivery is optimally low. According to El-Rufai (Byars LL, 2006) this can beattributed to among other things the failure of public organizationsto key into e-government with the attendant gains. This underscoreswhy e-government has been proposed as a way to improve and increase efficiency of service in public organizations.
The universities should work hard irrespective of the high cost of building infrastructure about e-government and e-governancein order to improve their productivity and to give administrators inpublic organizations the skills needed to maximize their performancein an information age. This is underscored by the fact that most publicorganizations shy away from imbibing e-government because of the high cost of providing ICT infrastructure like computers, internet broadband, telecommunication mast, uninterrupted electricity supplyand multimedia equipment in their organizations without whiche-government cannot be implemented.
At the same time, public organizations have to devote more timeand resources to create and sustain an environment of learning in viewof the quantum increases in knowledge and changes in informationand communication technology. The inability and lack of will on thepart of public organizations to create and sustain organizational goalsto deal with the consequences of e-government in their business/service environment is a strong militating factor. The lack of frequent training and retraining programs for employees in the area of ICT by public organizations hamper their efficiency and productivity. Withoutfrequent ICT update in the ever-changing world of knowledge noworker would be able to function efficiently through e-government.
1.3 Aim and Objective of the Study
The main aim and objective of this study is examine paperless inclusion in Nigeria ministries. The specific objective are
1. To examine the prescribed indices so as to ascertain the current status of e-governance in Nigeria
2. To identify the factors militating against the use of e-governmentfor service delivery in Federal ministries and toproffersolutions.
3. To examine how ICT sector in Nigeria have the adequate technical competence to accelerate socio-economic development.
1.4 Research Methodology
Doctrinal method and also empirical shall be mainly adopted in this research which will entail the consideration of statutes, textbooks of both foreign and local authors, journals, case laws conferences, materials form, collection of facts and data through questionnaires, internet and other relevant materials will be consulted.
1.5 Literature Review
Roumeen, Islam (2003) explored the link between information flows and governance through his study “Do More Transparent Governments Govern Better?” with the objective to examine how the availability of information may affect governance. Specifically, it looks at (a) how the availability of basic economic data affects governance and (b) how the legal framework governing access to information might affect the quality of governance. Empirical analysis showed that countries which have better information flows as measured by both indicators have better quality governance. Regions where the media have a greater reach were also the areas where voters were more informed about political choices and able to cast votes accordingly. They need timely information on decisions related to various aspects of government activity, on how these decisions will be implemented, information on the consequences of these decisions and the process through which they are reached.
Richard Heeks (2001) studied the effect of new information and communication technologies and how it can make a significant contribution to the achievement of good governance goals through his study “Understanding e-Governance for Development”. The paper outlines the three main contributions of e-governance: improving government processes (e-administration); connecting citizens (e-citizens and eservices); and building external interactions (e-society). Case studies are used to show that e-governance is a current, not just future, reality for developing countries. However, most e-governance initiatives fail. Countries therefore face two challenges. First, the strategic challenge of e-readiness: preparing six identified pre-conditions for e-governance i.e. Data Systems Infrastructure, Legal Infrastructure, Institutional Infrastructure Ready, Human Infrastructure, Technological Infrastructure, and Leadership and Strategic Thinking. Second, the tactical challenge of closing design-reality gaps: adopting best practice in e-governance projects in order to avoid failure and to achieve success.
Danish Dada, (2006) work on the failure of e-governance in developing countries. Drawing from extensive research on the topic conducted by Richard Heeks, the work suggests that there exists a wide gap between the current reality in developing countries and the future of e-governance systems. These gaps was classified into three types: a hard-soft gap, implying a gap between the technology and the social context in which it is applied; a private-public gap, suggesting that what works in the private sector may not work in the public sector; and a country context gap, that arises from the application of the same e-governance systems for both the developing and developed countries.
The study by David Coursey and Donald F. Norris (2008) presents empirical evidence from three surveys of local e-government in the United States to test whether the normative models are accurate or useful for understanding the actual development of e-government. Research into e-government is relatively new. Nevertheless much contemporary thinking and writing about e-government is driven by normative models that appeared less than a decade ago. The authors find that local e-government is mainly informational, with a few transactions but virtually no indication of the high-level functions predicted in the models. Thus, the models do not accurately describe or predict the development of e-government, at least among American local governments. These models, though intellectually interesting, are purely speculative, having been developed without linkage to the literature about information technology and government.
1.6 Scope of the Study
The scope of this study is centered on examining of paperless inclusion in Nigeria ministries and how paperless, e-government and e-administration has help the citizen of the country and improve economy.
1.7 Limitation of the Study
In carrying out this research many factors served as constraints:
1. The limitation of the research title as paperless inclusion in Nigeria ministries.
2. Financial Limitation.
3. Inadequate Time: time factor constitutes the major limitation of this research study. Itrelates to the fact that the time for research work was short because it was combinedwith lectures, studies and examination.
1.8 Definitions of Terms
A paperless office (or paper-free office): is a work environment in which the use of paper is eliminated or greatly reduced. This is done by converting documents and other papers into digital form, a process known as digitization. Proponents claim that “going paperless” can save money, boost productivity, save space, make documentation and information sharing easier, keep personal information more secure, and help the environment. The concept can be extended to communications outside the office as well.
Electronic governance or e-governance: is the application of information and communication technology (ICT) for delivering government services, exchange of information, communication transactions, integration of various stand-alone systems and services between government-to-citizen (G2C), government-to-business (G2B), government-to-government (G2G), government-to-employees (G2E) as well as back-office processes and interactions within the entire government framework (Saugata, 2007). Through e-governance, government services are made available to citizens in a convenient, efficient, and transparent manner. The three main target groups that can be distinguished in governance concepts are government, citizens, and businesses/interest groups. In e-governance, there are no distinct boundaries (Garson, 2006).
E-Administration, or electronic administration: refers to any of a number of mechanisms which convert what in a traditional office are paper processes into electronic processes, with the goal being to create a paperless office. This is an ICT tool, with the goal being to improve productivity and performance.
E-Administration can encompass both intra-office and inter-office communication for any organization.