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Existing studies of e-government concentrate on the supply-side by focusing on the availability and level of sophistication of online services and usage. This study addresses the demand-side of e-government - not only usage, but also perceptions and barriers to utilization that have not been treated previously. Indicators to measure acceptance and adoption of e-government were used to build two surveys that were then piloted among members of the 'general population' in the 15 EU Member States, Switzerland and Europe, and to decisionmakers (IT managers) in the commercial sector in seven EU countries. The results of the first survey indicated a preference for online services that do not require users to provide a great deal of personal information. Also, familiarity with using the Internet tended to correlate with a higher interest in online services. Reasons for preferring online services to their traditional counterparts include added convenience and increased efficiency. Attitudes toward e-government tended to vary by country, although reasons for this are not clear at this time. The decisionmakers survey shows that only about one third of businesses are currently using e-government. Among these, only about one third prefer this method over existing methods.

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This project was funded by the European Community under the “Information Society Technology” Programme (1998-2002).

This report is part of the RAND Corporation Monograph report series. The monograph/report was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1993 to 2003. RAND monograph/reports presented major research findings that addressed the challenges facing the public and private sectors. They included executive summaries, technical documentation, and synthesis pieces.

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