Understanding the 'E-Petitioner'
Smith, C. (2011). Understanding the 'E-Petitioner'. Transforming Government: People, Process and Policy, 5, (4), 319-329.
Purpose: This article considers the ways in which large-scale e-participation projects can be evaluated. It argues that existing evaluation approaches can be improved upon by taking a closer look at the characteristics of the users of such systems, by estimating their self-efficacy.
Design/methodology/approach: Literature review is followed by the development of relevant research questions, and an assessment of points at which relevant and useful data can be collected in a petitioning process.
Findings: Data relating to self-efficacy, while not simple to collect, can add much to the evaluation process, and has the potential to result in more effective projects and systems.
Research limitations: The findings are specific to one project, EuroPetition, which will allow the co-ordination and submission of cross-border pan-European petitions.
Originality/value: The article represents the first attempt to integrate perspectives derived from social cognitive theory to the evaluation of a large e-participation project. Self efficacy is discussed in terms of both computer self-efficacy and political self-efficacy.
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The technologies that help us to organise and share information on the internet are changing the way we live and work. This information society or knowledge economy people affects is in all kinds of new ways – as individuals, groups and organisations.