Essay, 4 pages (800 words)

Journal 2 :

Lecture Summary: This week’s lecture focused on the role of information technology in the government and public sector. In addition, knowledge-sharing and policy and management issues were also discussed. Swiss, James. 2003. Information Technology as a Facilitator of Results-Based Management in Government. In G. David Garson, Public Information Technology: Policy and Management Issues. Hershey, PA: Idea Group Publishing. Main Argument Results-based management is considered as the most widely accepted normative model of “ good” public management. It focuses on several crucial areas of management such as: (1) planning and target setting; (2) emphasis on outcomes; (3) quick performance feedback; and (4) continuous process improvements. However, the key component which made results-based management successful is the use of information technology. In addition, information technology provides improved management effectiveness once its role has been carefully planned and integrated into the management model. Take-Aways 1. Evolution of “ good” public management Information technology has changed the way things work in most aspects of human life. In order to keep up with the times, public managers should consider adapting to current technology. In addition, leadership and management behaviors which could have been effective decades ago would be obsolete today. 2. Characteristics of results-based public management A public manager should therefore be proactive, not reactive. Any opportunity or threat should be taken into consideration, even before such trends would manifest any effect on the organization. In addition, members of the organization should also be empowered to make their own decisions based on their duties and responsibilities. Dawes, Sharon S, Creswell, Anthony M & Pardo, Theresa A. 2009. From ” Need to Know” to ” Need to Share”: Tangled Problems, Information Boundaries, and the Building of Public Sector Knowledge Networks, Public Administration Review, 69(3), 392-402. Main Argument The creation of public sector knowledge networks and the promotion of knowledge sharing initiatives help facilitate the transition from a “ need to know” to a “ need to share” network culture for organizations. Take-Aways 1. Arguments on building and maintaining PSKN The creation and nurturing of a PSKN is a difficult process, but not impossible. Given the right knowledge, skills, and resources, network builders are capable of setting up PSKNs. 2. Factors affecting the implementation of PSKN To further facilitate PSKN development, a multi-dimensional approach should be adopted since a host of organizational, sociological, ideological, and political factors could affect PSKN initiatives. Brown, Mary Maureen & Brudney, Jeffrey, L. 2003. Learning Organizations in the Public Sector? A Study of Police Agencies Employing Information and Technology to Advance Knowledge, Public Administration Review, 63(1), 30-43. Main Argument A growing number of police departments are transitioning from an enforcement and incarceration philosophy towards a community problem-oriented policing philosophy. This phenomenon is being attributed to the benefits that knowledge workers are able to contribute to the organization. In essence, a community problem-oriented philosophy uses information dissemination in promoting a proactive and preventive approach in addressing crime and disorder. By utilizing information technology to improve productivity, performance, and effectiveness, police departments are training their police officer to become problem solvers. Take-Aways 1. Learning-organization paradigm The adoption of learning-organization paradigms prevents organizational rigidity which reduces an organization’s ability to respond to disruptions in the environment. 2. Development of information technology solutions in a turbulent environment Steps should be taken to sway end-user perception of IT solutions development towards a favorable one. IT solutions should be seen as a cost-effective, modern approach in addressing design issues. Kim, Sonhee & Lee, Hyangsoo. 2006. The Impact of Organizational Context and Information Technology on Employee Knowledge-Sharing Capabilities, Public Administration Review, 66(3), 370-385. Main Argument Knowledge and information sharing plays a key role in everyday operations of government, national security, and human capital management. Several factors have been identified which positively affects level of knowledge-sharing capabilities such as social networking; centralization; performance-based rewards; employee use of user-friendly information technology systems and applications. Take-Aways 1. Use of IT systems in collaborative work among public sector organizations This clearly shows how some public sector organizations are adapting and utilizing current technology for the purpose of collaboration and coordination of services. Appropriate technologies should be identified and made available for public sector organizations. 2. Organizational culture and knowledge-sharing The existing organizational culture is more likely to influence how knowledge-sharing is practiced and promoted. If employees are more receptive and open, the flow of information and knowledge would be faster and more diverse. Government organizations should, therefore, nurture a culture receptive to change. Concept Synthesis: The government and public sectors have begun to harness the power of information technology to gain the benefits being provided by knowledge workers. Taking a bold step away from the conventional philosophies and outdated technologies, the government and public sector organizations acknowledged the need to shift from a competent but passive stance of public management into a proactive, agile, and results-oriented form. Transition from a passive to active approach in public management would greatly complement the adoption of information technology solutions. Moreover, the concept of knowledge-sharing, information-sharing, collaboration and public sector knowledge networks will help strengthen a knowledge-based public management approach.

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