Seoul and Toronto Achieve Top Rankings in Municipal E-Governance International Survey; Rutgers-Newark/Kent State Global E-Governance Survey Ranks Seoul #1
A global survey of city websites has identified Seoul, South Korea, as the top-ranked city in the performance of municipal e-governance. This research study was conducted jointly by the E-Governance Institute in the School of Public Affairs and Administration at Rutgers University-Newark and the Department of Political Science at Kent State University.
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The survey evaluated websites of municipalities worldwide in terms of privacy, usability, content, services, and citizen and social engagement, and ranked the cities on a global scale. Co-sponsored by the Public Technology Institute, the study listed the following cities among the top 5 in digital governance: Seoul, Toronto, Madrid, Prague, and Hong Kong.
Top 10 Cities in Digital Governance Worldwide
Ranking City, Score
1 Seoul, 82.23
2 Toronto, 64.31
3 Madrid, 63.63
4 Prague, 61.72
5 Hong Kong, 60.81
6 New York, 60.49
7 Stockholm, 60.26
8 Bratislava, 56.74
9 London, 56.19
10 Shanghai, 55.49
Seoul retains its top ranking in municipal e-governance, similar to the 2003, 2005, 2007, and 2009 survey results. As a direct result of this innovative use of e-governance, Seoul continues to provide its citizens with opportunities to participate in governmental processes, including well-organized and systematic opportunities to submit their ideas and suggestions on proposed policies via policy forums. This enables government administrators and elected officials to respond directly to citizen action when establishing public policies. Seoul also ranked first in the categories of usability, services, and citizen and social engagement.
Although governments across the world increasingly offer their services online, studies evaluating the performance of such online services (broadly referred to as “e-governance”) primarily focus on federal, state, and local governments in the United States. Only a few studies have produced comparative analyses of e-governance in municipalities worldwide. This particular e-governance survey, first conducted in 2003 and repeated in 2005, 2007, 2009, and 2011, represents a continued effort to evaluate e-governance in large municipalities globally. The study systematically utilizes the comprehensive Rutgers E-Governance Performance Index by classifying 104 measures into five categories: privacy, usability, services, content, and citizen and social engagement. Evaluating each municipality’s website in its native language to examine how the local constituency perceives their government online, the survey highlights the strengths and weaknesses of each municipality in terms of the five subject areas and then ranks the municipalities on an overall basis and within each category.
The e-governance study highlights the increased attention spent on usability, as the percentage of cities with official websites increased significantly around the world. Oceania was the top-ranked continent, followed by Europe and Asia. The top-ranked cities for each continent are Johannesburg (Africa), Seoul (Asia), Madrid (Europe), Toronto (North America), Auckland (Oceania), and Sao Paolo (South America). Madrid replaced Prague as the highest-ranked city for European municipalities, and Toronto switched places with New York City as the highest-ranked city in North America.
According to Professor Marc Holzer, Dean of the School of Public Affairs and Administration and Executive Director of the E-Governance Institute at Rutgers-Newark: “The E-Governance Performance Index used for the survey is a set of benchmarks that spotlight high levels of performance throughout the world and foster high expectations for improved web-based municipal service delivery in the near future, in all countries. Administering the survey jointly helped to reduce cultural bias in the survey methodology.”
The continued study of municipalities worldwide, with a sixth evaluation planned in 2013, will further provide insight into the direction of e-governance and the performance of e-governance throughout the regions of the world. Rutgers’ E-Governance Institute is also conducting the third United States States/Cities E-Governance Survey this year. The survey evaluates the status of e-governance in all 50 states and the two largest cities in each state. The Rutgers E-Governance Institute also conducts its Global E-Governance Survey, evaluating the status of e-governance in the largest municipalities in 100 of the world’s most “wired” countries. The E-Governance Institute is a program of the School of Public Affairs and Administration at Rutgers University in Newark, which U.S. News & World Report recently ranked 4th in Information and Technology among graduate programs in public affairs and administration in the United States.
Visit the E-Governance website at http://spaa.newark.rutgers.edu/home/ncpp/institutes/e-governance-institute.html to access Digital Governance in Municipalities Worldwide (2011-12) as well as the latest reports, articles, and publications on the best practices of e-governance around the world.
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