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Public Sector Information in the Digital Age
Between Markets, Public Management and Citizens' Rights
This timely volume reviews key issues and developments in the controversial area of public sector information (PSI). It addresses the fundamental themes, challenges and conflicts surrounding the access to, and use of, PSI in the new digital era. Using detailed empirical analyses and case studies from across Europe and the USA, the authors focus on the crucial policy, economic, legal and social issues. The public sector is the biggest single producer and holder of information including administrative and government documents, regulatory texts, political data and public registers. The authors demonstrate that this huge store of information is a key resource for a broad range of stakeholders such as citizens, civic organisations, private businesses and public sector agencies. They argue that charging the marginal cost of dissemination, a policy favoured in the US, will lead to optimal economic growth in society and will far outweigh the immediate perceived benefits of aggressive cost recovery.
They illustrate how open government information policies create significant economic advantages to society and are beneficial in both the short and long term for the general public, the private sector and for governments themselves. This is one of the first books devoted to addressing the new challenges of access to PSI and the role of public policy. The international contributors, including leading experts from Europe and US, have produced an informative and coherent resource that will be of interest to scholars, students and decision-makers working in the fields of public policy, economics, political science, law and information technology.
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What Reviewers Are Saying
'... this is a most contemporary publication. This excellent collection offers both a breadth and depth of coverage that other books or collections of articles will find hard to surpass.' -- Philip Wane, Information, Communication and Society 'In summary, this book is one of the first attempts at providing an overview of the issues and challenges related with public sector information, and it surely will benefit all levels of audiences. I highly recommend this book for any student or scholar interested in this important area.' -- Cheon-Pyo Lee, Information Technology and People 'The public sector is the largest producer of information and the Internet could provide ubiquitous access to it. This book offers a comprehensive analysis of the issues at stake. Its comparative approach reveals the diverse frameworks for access to public sector information in Europe and the United States. Case studies and a thorough discussion of principal policy options and potential goal conflicts provide a framework for facing the challenges ahead.' -- Johannes M. Bauer, Michigan State University, US