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ERIC Number: ED520407
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 216
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1241-3788-9
Personal Data Protection in E-Government: Globalization or Glocalization? A Comparative Study of the United States, Germany and China
Wu, Yuehua
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Michigan State University
The development and diffusion of information and communication technologies, particularly the internet, creates a worldwide trend of using ICTs and the internet to deliver public services. This new form of electronic administration--e-government--potentially offers great benefits to society in that it can enhance public service efficiency, quality, and cost-effectiveness. However, the development of e-government carries new risks. Compared to government functioning in the pre-computer era, e-government involves the generating, storing, processing, and transferring of much larger amounts of personal data. The development and expansion of e-government, therefore, affects individuals' right to privacy, in particular the right to information privacy. It is necessary to balance the societal benefits promised by e-government with individual rights to information privacy. Adequate personal data protection is also essential to boost public trust in online government and is thus crucial to the success of e-government. This study provides a comparative overview of the national/federal laws and policies protecting personal data collected and processed in e-government in the US, Germany, and China, and a brief overview of the international legal and policy landscape. The first goal is to examine the overall regulatory frameworks adopted at the national and supranational level, with the hope that it will contribute to the current reflections on this topic worldwide. Drawing on governance and Internet governance theory, a further theoretical goal is to understand the governance mechanism of this issue and to evaluate the impact of national context on the governance modes adopted. The analysis will provide practical guidance for the governing of this issue and other internet policy issues. Overall, the study found that national government regulations and the international regulatory framework do not keep pace with technological changes or with the current information practices of the public sector and relevant private parties. In many instances, the existing data protection laws were found insufficient to protect personal information in the e-government area. New laws or revisions of the existing data protection laws and enforceable global standards are desired to address the increasing information privacy concerns in this particular context. With respect to governance models, the study found that traditional government regulation is currently a major governance mode for the issue under discussion, which counters the "governance without government" perspective that is widely held for internet governance. Whereas international agreements provide guidance on the most basic principles for data protection, alternative regulation and code-based technological rules serve supplementary roles to the government regulatory framework at both the national and international levels. National government regulation seems to be seen as the most effective means to achieve meaningful protection of personal data in the context of e-government, which yet has to be accompanied by other governance modes as mentioned above to be a complete success. Meanwhile, the national context is found to impact the form and level of data protection and the choice of governance modes of this issue with respect to the specific context of e-government. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: China; Germany; United States