Opportunities and challenges of the digital lifespan: views of service providers and citizens in the UK

Orzech, Kathryn, Moncur, Wendy, Durrant, Abigail and Trujillo-Pisanty, Diego (2018) Opportunities and challenges of the digital lifespan: views of service providers and citizens in the UK. Information Communication and Society, 21 (1). pp. 14-29. ISSN 1369-118X

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/1369118X.2016.1257043

Abstract

Information about UK citizens’ use of digital technologies is often expressed in statistics – x% lack Internet access; y% get online to engage in online banking, update social media sites, or participate in online auctions. There are many social implications to digital technology use, however – individuals may communicate online as a major way to stay in touch with friends and family, and as Internet access rises and government and public sector budgets shrink, online services become an increasingly attractive way for government and public sector service providers to communicate with citizens. This paper presents selected results of an exploratory study designed to investigate the digital personhood of UK citizens through interviews with participants at three life transitions: leaving secondary school, becoming a parent, and retiring from work. Digital personhood in this paper implies identity information online, and some interaction with others around that information. We then report on our presentation of a selection of these results to thirteen stakeholders who represented UK government departments, public sector organisations, and industry. We found that citizen and stakeholder concerns were quite different, especially at the new parent life transition, and that stakeholders tended to underestimate the willingness and ability of citizens to become involved online with the government and public sector, and overestimate citizens’ vulnerability online. Future research should investigate practical strategies for increasing communication between stakeholders and citizens, and also how to encourage stakeholders to work together to benefit their common clientele – the citizens.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: E-government, digital literacy, civil servants, public sector, online privacy, trust, impact
Subjects: P100 Information Services
P900 Others in Mass Communications and Documentation
Department: Faculties > Arts, Design and Social Sciences > Design
Depositing User: Becky Skoyles
Date Deposited: 28 Nov 2018 09:48
Last Modified: 11 Oct 2019 18:07
URI: http://nrl.northumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/36944

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