Infrastructure developments under the National Broadband Network and the prominence of Web 2.0 technologies and other broadband-enabled applications and services have prompted the Australian Federal Government to address Internet use for two-way communication with citizens. Online civic engagement is encouraged and endorsed through recent policies; however, there is a significant gap in transforming visions of engagement into forms of action. Federal initiatives emphasise the role of customers over citizens and implicitly equate improved service delivery with increased online engagement. This article explores the e-government goal of the National Digital Economy Strategy, which aims to have four out of five Australians engaging with governments online by 2020 and identifies that local and state governments will drive greater digital engagement. Improved infrastructure will not routinely transfer into increased online engagement, and local governments in particular will require additional guidance and support when advancing e-government practices. This article suggests that a cohesive e-government policy approach that coordinates knowledge and action through the various tiers of Australian government would facilitate the development of citizen-centric opportunities for e-government engagement. © 2012 Swinburne University of Technology.
Freeman, J. (2012). Driving Australia's digital future?: Online engagement and the national digital economy strategy. Telecommunications Journal of Australia, 62(5), 79.1-79.12. https://doi.org/10.7790/tja.v62i5.368