DQ-IDC e-Gov Survey 2007: Government for the People



In the nineteenth century, historian Vincent Smith had praised
the Indian polity for its resilient nature, for its “Unity in Divesity”.
In 2007, with IT having pervaded every sphere of life in India, it is the
concept of e-Governance that best illustrates the diversity across different
Indian states, but at the same time highlights the underlying unity that binds
them together. True, different states are on different levels in their march to
adoption of e-Governance, but all are at least united today in acknowledging its
importance, and looking at how it can be effectively utilized to improve the
quality of governance.

IT is an immensely effective tool for increasing the penetration
of a service to its intended beneficiaries. Governance, as a service, is no
different. Spreading the benefits of governance to the citizens of the country
has been an uphill task for the Indian government agencies. IT is giving it a
welcome leg up. E-Governance helps take the benefits of government’s citizen
services to the common man.

E-Governance is still finding its feet. This year, the
Dataquest-IDC e-Governance Satisfaction Study focuses on the respondent’s
satisfaction with e-Governance, further measured by satisfaction with the ease
of use, availability and quality of e-Governance services meted out by the state
governments.

More and more services are being aided by IT, but the
satisfaction of the citizens and businesses with regards to the ease of
interaction, availability and quality of these services differs greatly from
state to state. While Goa, Karnataka, Delhi, Gujarat, and Andhra Pradesh seem to
have understood how to leverage IT for governance services, UP, Rajasthan,
Punjab, Orissa and HP seem to be lagging far behind.

Measuring e-Gov Success
With increasing budget allocations, increasing per capita spend on IT and
increasing number of initiatives on the road, the state governments seem to be
well on their way to successful e-Governance. However, none of these mean
anything if the intended beneficiaries-in this case individual citizens and
businesses-are not satisfied. That is why the Dataquest-IDC e-Governance Study
this year measures the satisfaction levels for these services in terms of ease
of interaction, availability, and quality.

More and
more services are being aided by IT, but the satisfaction of the citizens
and businesses with regards to the ease of interaction, differs greatly
from state to state
The
Champion
: Goa
Satisfied!:
Karnataka
Makes
the List
:
Delhi
UP
is Down
:
Uttar Pradesh
The e-Gov
Scorecard of Indian States

State

Score

Rank

Goa

72.83

1

Karnataka

66.69

2

Delhi

65.67

3

Gujarat

63.05

4

Andhra Pradesh

62.82

5

Uttarakhand

59.44

6

Assam

58.76

7

Tamil Nadu

58.66

8

Maharashtra

58.63

9

Haryana

57.65

10

Kerala

56.62

11

MP

56.45

12

West Bengal

54.68

13

Chhattisgarh

51.64

14

Jharkhand

49.84

15

HP

48.30

16

Orissa

48.12

17

Punjab

47.50

18

Rajasthan

46.44

19

UP

45.34

20

The perennial debate on
whether having smaller states help in providing better governance is
further fueled by the results of the Dataquest-IDC e-Gov survey. While a
tiny state like Goa emerges at the top and a city-state like Delhi
features among the Top 3, the largest state in the country, UP, lands with
the wooden spoon. Is there a lesson herein for our bureaucrats and other
decision makers responsible for framing state reorganization policies?

Among the 20 states that this study covers, as already mentioned
Goa, Karnataka, Delhi, Gujarat, and Andhra Pradesh ranked as the Top 5. The
tail-enders included Himachal Pradesh, Orissa, Punjab, Rajasthan, and at the
very bottom, Uttar Pradesh.

The states were measured for satisfaction of the beneficiaries
as well as e-readiness of the governments, and quite often, the results were
disparate. For instance, Karnataka, which had the highest score in satisfaction,
had a very low score in e-readiness. Goa, which topped the study, has high
scores in both (highest score in e-readiness and second highest in
satisfaction). The lowest score in satisfaction was landed by Punjab, while the
least e-readiness score was Orissa’s. In general, e-readiness scores for most
states are lower than satisfaction of the beneficiaries, except for Delhi and
Punjab.

The Top 5 states in overall satisfaction levels for e-Governance
services for citizens are Karnataka, Goa, Gujarat, Maharashtra, and Assam. The
states that fared the worst were Orissa, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab and
Uttar Pradesh.

There is
now a nationwide thrust on e-Governance. Not only the high-performing
states but also the so-called low performers have several e-initiatives
under way

In terms of overall satisfaction levels for e-Governance
services for businesses, the Top 5 states are Karnataka, Goa, Gujarat, Andhra
Pradesh, and Assam, while the bottom 5 are Chhattisgarh, Himachal Pradesh,
Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Punjab, with Punjab at the bottom. Of the 20
states, only two (Maharashtra and Punjab) performed better in their services for
the citizens than in their services for the businesses.

From the Eyes of Citizens and Businesses
In the citizen services, the maximum score that any state achieved in any
parameter for overall satisfaction is for income tax department, and the state
is Gujarat. The second highest score has been bagged by Gujarat for power
utility. On the other hand, the lowest score by any state for any parameter is
for police and security and the state is Punjab. The second lowest, similarly,
is for Transport/RTO, and the state is Uttar Pradesh.

In services for business organizations, the maximum score has
been bagged by Assam for passport services, followed by Gujarat, for power
utility. On the other hand, as in citizen services, the lowest satisfaction
score is achieved by Punjab for police and security, followed by again Punjab
for power utility.

The study took into consideration qualitative and secondary
factors as well. When making a qualitative assessment of the states’
e-Governance initiatives and IT vision, the top states is Madhya Pradesh, while
the states that fare the worst is Haryana.

However, in terms of overall secondary scores, which include the
above qualitative factors as well as a number of factors that evaluated the
availability and usage of ICT and social/educational infrastructure, the state
that scored the most is Goa, while Orissa had the least score.

It is evident that there is now a nationwide thrust on
e-Governance. This is reflected in the fact that not only the high-performing
states but also the so-called low performers have several e-initiatives under
way. It is hoped that this will not only help the low-performing states pull up,
but also raise the overall standard of the ease of interaction, availability and
quality of government services for citizens and businesses alike.

Similarly, if one were to look at things from the perspective of
the services, there are some that seem to fare better than others, like
education, power utility, income tax department, passport services, supplies
provisions and business registration.

Why They
Lost Out

(States
whose ranks have dropped by more than four positions from the DQ-IDC E-Gov
Survey last year)

For UP, the scores across
each of the categories (Corporate, Citizen and e-readiness ) has decreased
the most in citizens. If we analyse more deeply, we find that both
citizens and corporates are dissatisfied on “ease of
interaction” followed by “quality of service”. Even on
Availability of services, the citizens are more dissatisfied than
corporates. The citizens are too dissatisfied with Passport, Education,
Agriculture and Healthcare services by the Govt whereas the scores of from
corporates have gone down mostly in Transport, Power and Passport
services.

In case of Punjab, the
scores across each of the categories (Corporate, Citizen and e-readiness)
has decreased being maximum in corporates and eReadiness. If we analyse
more deeply, we find that both citizens and corporates are dissatisfied on
“availability of service” followed by “ease of
interaction”. Even on Quality of services, the corporates are more
dissatisfied than citizens. The satisfaction score of citizens have
decreased significantly in Transport/RTO, Income Tax, Police and Security
departments as compared to that of last year. The major areas of concern
for corporates are Power Utility, Police Security, Income Tax and
Transport/ RTO.

The scores across each of
the categories (Corporate, Citizen and e-readiness) for Rajasthan has
decreased with almost similar contributions from corporates and citizens.
We find that both citizens and corporates are dissatisfied on “ease
of interaction” followed by “quality of service”. Even on
Availability of services, the citizens are more dissatisfied than
corporates. Both citizens and corporates are found to be very dissatisfied
mostly with Police and Security services of Govt as compared to the last
year.

For Kerala, the scores
across each of the categories (Corporate, citizen and e-readiness) has
decreased being maximum in citizens. On deeper analysis we find that both
citizens and corporates are dissatisfied on “quality of service”
followed by “ease of interaction”. Even on Availability of
services, the citizens are more dissatisfied than corporates. Citizens are
much dissatisfied as compared to the last year with the services of the
departments like Judiciary, passport, Water, Income Tax and Police. The
satisfaction scores of the corporates in the services of Municipal
Corporation and Land/Property has gone down massively.

Madhya Pradesh has seen the
scores across each of the categories (Corporate, Citizen and e-readiness)
decreased, with the maximum being in case of citizens. If we analyse, we
find that both citizens and corporates are dissatisfied on “ease of
interaction” followed by “quality of service”. Even on
Availability of services, the citizens are more dissatisfied than
corporates. Citizens are too dissatisfied as compared to the last year
with the services of the departments like Passport, Agriculture, Water,
Power, Municipal Corporation. Corporates are also very dissatisfied with
the above mentioned departments and Sales Tax department in addition.

In case of Chattisgarh, the
scores across each of the categories (Corporate, Citizen and e-readiness)
has decreased being maximum in corporates. We find that both citizens and
corporates are dissatisfied on “ease of interaction” followed by
“availability of service”. Even on Quality of services, the
corporates are more dissatisfied than citizens. The citizens are
dissatisfied with services of State Transport and Land/Property
departments as compared to the last year. And the Corporates are found to
be too dissatisfied with most of the Govt departments this time. The few
departments where major fall in satisfaction scores occurred are Passport,
Judiciary, Police & Security, Water, Power Utility and Municipal
Corporation.

But there are some services that most states are struggling
with, like police and security and agriculture for citizens and police and
security and licenses and permits in the case of businesses. Overall, though,
businesses seem to show higher satisfaction with e-Governance initiatives than
individual citizens. This could either be because businesses do interact
directly with governments more often than individuals, or because the state
governments are more focused towards businesses when it comes to e-Governance.

One of the
main objectives of most e-Governance initiatives is increased
transparency, and, therefore, reduced corruption but they don’t seem to
have gone very far with it

The most evident benefit of e-Governance is the increase in the
sheer ease of use. For many years, Indians, whether individual citizens or
business entities have suffered from the excessive red tape surrounding
government services, and the increase in the ease of use has obviously been
received well. There has also been an increase in the availability of services
because IT has helped in opening more service centers. One of the main
objectives of most e-Governance initiatives is increased transparency, and
therefore, reduced corruption. That, however, seems to be the Holy Grail of
state e-Governance initiatives and they don’t seem to have gone very far with
it.

Methodology

Research
Objective

To assess the availability of ICT infrastructure, the rollout of e-Gov
projects of select Indian states and evaluate the impact of these projects
on the delivery of government services to common citizens and business
organizations (trading, services and industrial business).

Research
Methodology

This study was conducted in three phases:

Phase I: Selection of States
Since this study is among Indian states, we have not covered union
territories in our survey. After excluding the Indian states (namely
J&K, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland and Tripura) due to
security reasons, we had sent invitations the remaining 23. 20 responded
within set timeline.

Phase II: Survey of State IT
Secretaries/Heads of State Nodal IT Agencies and Secondary Research/IDC
Data

A survey of the state IT Secretaries/heads of state nodal IT agencies of
the 20 states was conducted to get first-hand information of the ICT
policy/vision of the respective states and understand their priorities in
terms of rollout/implementation of e-Gov projects. This was backed by
extensive secondary research.

Phase III: Survey of Citizens and
Business organizations

This part of the study evaluated the effectiveness of IT deployment by
governments of the 20 major states of India, based on a primary survey of
common citizens as well as business organizations regarding the actual
satisfaction with the delivery of government services.

The key citizen services
covered included:
Transport/RTO; Land/Property department; Income tax department; Municipal
corporation; Police and security; Power utility; Water utility;
Agriculture; Healthcare; Judiciary; Passport services; State transport;
Education; Employment exchange

The key business services
covered were:
Business registration; Small business assistance; Licenses and permits;
Government tenders and contracts; Financial assistance; Supplies,
provisions; Incentives and grants; Transport/RTO; Land/Property
department; Income tax department; Sale tax/service tax /commercial tax;
Municipal corporation; Power utility; Water utility; Police and security;
Judiciary; Passport services

These ‘service types’
were evaluated on three broad parameters: Satisfaction in ease of
interaction while actually availing a government service; Satisfaction in
service availability; Satisfaction in service quality.

 

Analysis
Methodology

Phase II: Survey of State IT
Secretaries/Heads of State Nodal IT Agencies, Secondary Research

The state IT Secretaries/heads of state nodal IT agencies of the 20
selected states were interviewed to assess and profile their states in
terms of their budgetary allocation for IT and e-governance projects,
total spend on recently implemented projects (2005-06) and planned spend
on new/ongoing projects (2006-07 and 2007-08). A percentile method was
employed to allocate scores to the states on individual parameters, with
the state reporting the best performance being allocated a percentile
score of 100. This actual/planned IT spend was allocated a weightage of 6%
in the overall assessment.

A further qualitative
analysis for each state was conducted to evaluate the scope of the various
e-governance projects in terms of services offered, number of
towns/municipal areas/villages/block panchayats covered or to be covered,
expected benefits to state citizens and so on. In a fashion similar to
that described above, after allocating percentile scores to each
parameter, this set of factors was allocated a 9% weightage in the overall
assessment.

Finally, the 20 selected
states were rated on the basis of availability and usage of ICT and
social/educational infrastructure like number of PCs per 1,000 population,
per capita IT spend, number of telephones per 100 population, Internet
subscribers per 1,000 population and the capacity of the state to produce
technically qualified manpower. These factors were allocated a combined
weight of 10% in the overall assessment.

Phase III: Survey of Citizens and
Business organizations

To evaluate the effectiveness of IT usage by governments of 20 selected
states in India, covering the key aspects of citizen services, business
services, government-citizen interface, government-business interface,
etc., a primary survey of 3,033 citizen users and business users was
conducted across the 20 selected states. 150 interviews were conducted in
each state (two major cities in each states) amongst urban citizens, rural
citizens, rural and urban professionals (lawyers, doctors, chartered
accountants) and administrative/business heads of small, mid-size and
large business organizations.

To arrive at a 100-point
score, a five-point ‘Satisfaction Rating’ scale was used to evaluate
the feedback on each type of government service and the average score for
each service type multiplied by a factor of 20. The scores obtained from
this survey were allocated a weightage of 75% in the overall assessment
and ranking of the states. Hence, the individual service-wise and total
scores for each state reported in this survey reflect the extent to which
citizens and business organizations are satisfied with delivery of
government services after/as a result of deployment of e-Gov initiatives.
The total score of a state reflects the consolidated score of user
satisfaction and eReadiness of that particular state.

The IT spends of the state governments are going up, as is their
plan for per capita spend. There are several e-Governance projects under way or
in service. But the disparities between the states are immense, whether it is in
the intentions or in the actions. E-readiness is generally low across the board,
clearly indicating that work needs to be done, both in ensuring that more
initiatives are put in place, as well as ensuring that those initiatives reach
the intended beneficiaries and deliver the benefits that they are supposed to in
the best possible way.

Rajneesh De

rajneeshd@cybermedia.co.in

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