Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

How digitisation affects inter-governmental relationships

New forms of authority are emerging from the digitisation and integration processes of governmental information infrastructures. An EU initiative shed light on these new forms.
How digitisation affects inter-governmental relationships
The practices of digitisation of public administration information infrastructures are ideal for exploring authority restructuring at national, transnational and local levels and among public and private sectors. Digitisation of information infrastructures in institutional settings is challenging the current order of authority and triggering emergent actors, different information-policy hierarchies, novel subjects of authority and procedures of legitimacy.

In this context, the EU-funded TRANSLATEINSTITUTION (Translating institutions. Digitisation of administrative data assets as redesign of the modernist state) project examined which novel forms of authority and characteristics of sovereignty are surfacing from the redesign of administrative information infrastructures.

To achieve its aims, the project conducted three case studies in Italy and the Netherlands involving geographical and civil data within national settings.

One of the cases focused on the integration of personal data between local and national authorities. Results show that the integration of civil registers does not involve a zero-sum redistribution of information, but initiates brand new actors and task arrangements.

Another case study investigated the workings of the Dutch Parliamentary Commission on information and communication technology (ICT) failures. It examined how the media, professionals and academics, the Parliamentary Commission, and the Dutch parliament and government interpreted this ICT failure. Findings reveal that the way ICT failures are presented by media and then adopted by Parliament can influence potential organisational solutions. This challenges existing inter-ministerial organisation.

The final study focused on integration of the Dutch Cadastre's land registry and property databases with the national personal data register over a 20-year period. It identified several techno-social decisions that have allowed the Cadastre to maintain control over its informational assets and internally develop technical capabilities.

TRANSLATEINSTITUTION will have implications for the design of ICT governmental projects that affect local and national relationships, mid- and long-term ICT policies by subnational, national and transnational governments, as well as policymaking and management of large-scale governmental ICT projects.

Related information


Digitisation, governmental information infrastructures, TRANSLATEINSTITUTION, administrative data assets, data circulation, governance by information infrastructures
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