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Digital Government-Citizen Interaction


Admission requirements

Not applicable


This course explores digital interactions between governments and citizens. Focusing on policymaking and digital-era governance, the course will pay special attention to managing participatory processes for better public service delivery.

There are two ways to understand e-governments and how they use digital information in public services. First, e-governments collect citizen data and utilize digital technology to improve efficiency and – ultimately – optimize public services (modernization). Second, e-governments involve citizens in coproducing data and digital public service delivery (democratization). The course will combine both perspectives.

In the course, students will learn about different types of interactions between civil servants and citizens (e.g. coproduction, participation), as well as broader normative issues associated with government-citizens relations (e.g. democracy, citizenship). To explore these various aspects, the course draws on different research domains and follows an interdisciplinary approach (e.g. Public Administration, Communication Science, Information Systems Research).

Course objectives

At the end of this course, students are able to:

● Describe theories of how the rise of e-government has changed digital government-citizen relations in terms of public service use and citizen participation;

● Put forward evidence-based arguments on the debate regarding street-level and system-level bureaucracies;

● Explain the concept of ‘coproduction’ and the role of digital technology in coproduction practices across a range of governmental domains and service areas;

● Critically evaluate current debates (e.g., privacy, filter bubbles and the digital divide) on the potential of big data to improve public services and citizen participation.

The course will raise questions around the democratic dimension of services while also looking at the provision side (civil servants) of the process. There are also different benefits for students from different programs:

● ICT in Business Students can gain a better understanding of the service dimension of the technologies and how citizens respond and shape these technologies in the political context.

● MPS Students can gain insights into the technologies currently being implemented by government, the effects on democratic and co-creation processes and the opportunities for better management.


The schedule can be found on the Leiden University student website. This LIACS schedule is always the correct schedule with the latest updates.

BSK students can also look at this schedule (however the LIACS schedule is leading):

Detailed table of contents can be found in Brighstpace.

Mode of instruction

Digital self-study materials and online tutorials. If the Coronavirus restrictions allow, in-person classes will be used where possible.

. Course load

4 online tutorial meetings of 75 minutes each.
4 sets of digital self-study materials of approximately 2 hours each.
3 hours of examination

Assessment method

Assignment 1: Peer-feedback on essay (pass/fail)
Assignment 2: Essay (50% of final grade)
Exam (50% of final grade)

For MPS students only: an extended/additional essay assignment is offered for 2 extra EC points.

The teacher will inform the students how the inspection of and follow-up discussion of the exams will take place.


To be announced


You have to sign up for classes and examinations (including resits) in uSis. Check this link for more information and activity codes.

There is only limited capacity for external students. Please contact the programme Co-ordinator


Programme Co-ordinator: ms. Esme Caubo


Also register for every course in Brightspace. Important information about the course is posted here. PA and GofS students: please register under 4353DGCI3 in Usis to be automatically enrolled in the Brightspace environment