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A user-centred approach to pan-European e-government services

User-centred services


As of 1 January 2005, the IDABC Programme will enable and support the Interoperable Delivery of Pan-European e-Government Services to Public Administrations, Businesses and Citizens. In order to prepare for this crucial new phase, IDA has launched a study to determine user and stakeholder requirements for e-government services at pan-European level.

The Decision of the European Parliament and the Council 2004/387/EC, establishing the IDABC Programme, defines pan-European e-government services (PEGSs) as cross-border electronic public services, informational or interactive, provided by European public administrations at all levels to either other European public administrations, or to European businesses or citizens, including their respective associations.

In order to prepare a list of necessary and beneficial PEGSs that could be implemented under the programme, the Decision states that comprehensive consultations should be undertaken, which should involve all concerned stakeholders in all relevant sectors, and should focus on the needs of and benefits for citizens and businesses.

In accordance with this Decision, IDA has just launched a study to determine the requirements of citizens and businesses for pan-European services. This study will help establish a list of PEGSs that will have to be developed in order to ensure that the essential needs of businesses and citizens are met. IDABC will begin working on the delivery of these PEGSs in 2005.

The approach chosen for performing this study is a bottom-up approach, whereby information will be channelled from businesses and citizens themselves, either through relevant intermediaries (chambers of commerce, industrial confederations, consumers associations, human resource departments of multinational companies or European institutions, etc.), or directly by users and stakeholders as well as service providers. The study will draw on quantitative and qualitative evidence concerning the needs of and benefits for citizens and businesses, collected through focus groups and interviews with key stakeholders as well as through an online survey.

The study results, which will be known by end 2004, will help create a sound basis for IDABC to deliver the pan-European e-government services that truly meet the needs of Europeans.

Article published in the IDA Report 22 - June 2004