Proceedings of the 53rd Annual Meeting of the ISSS - 2009, Brisbane, Australia, Proceedings of the 53rd Annual Meeting of the International Society for the Systems Sciences

Font Size:  Small  Medium  Large

LOCAL E-GOVERNMENT IN NEW ZEALAND: DIGITAL STRATEGY, SOCIAL INCLUSION AND LIVEABILITY

Kay Fielden, Pam Malcolm

Abstract


In 2006, 98 percent of New Zealand residents lived in households with telephones - either landline or cell phone or both. In 2006 New Zealand’s population was just over 4 million people. Therefore, in the order of 80,000 (2% of 4 million) did not have telephone access. If we consider that dialup access is the minimum internet standard required to be part of a digital world, these people are less likely to be served by the New Zealand government’s digital strategy.
The questions addressed in this paper are: (i) What issues arise for those people who live in the margins of society when considering New Zealand Government’s national digital strategy; and (ii) How does the New Zealand Government’s national digital strategy address issues that arise for those people who live in the margins of society.
These issues will be explored by considering four hypothetical cases:
Psychological disability. In this case subject A, who has bipolar disorder but has the intellectual capacity, the knowledge and skills to access the internet is considered. This particular psychological disorder places A in a lower socioeconomic status as A can only work during the small personal windows of opportunity between mood swings.
Impaired intellectual ability. In this case subject B has family support, but learning disabilities, lack of life skills, and lives in the family home with financial support.
Homelessness. Subject C is considered to belong to the invisible homeless population – moving between temporary accommodation and living – but not sleeping on the street.
The elderly. Subject D has never even used an ATM, owned a cell phone, or operated a computer and lives on a pension.

These four hypothetical cases will be analysed systemically using a Sustainability to Liveability model (STLM) that incorporates core systems properties: communication, control, emergence and structure (Checkland, 1984); and four other properties: whole system, socioeconomic status, ICT access and personal coping mechanisms.
Results from this study suggest that both sustainability and liveability have different meanings for each subject studied.

Full Text: PDF