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Curbing the misuse of discretionary power in public service: Case of building plan approvals using simple checklists

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1 Author(s)
Ray, S. ; Decision Sci., Xavier Inst. of Manage., India

Much of the misused discretionary power vested with public office bearers emanate from complicated business rules that govern the provision of public services. Without simplifying the administrative rules there is a limit to which reform of public services can be attained. E-Government, as many have noted boils down to mere replication of existing services. In this paper we discuss how public services using ICT was significantly reformed by implementing the same business rules but in a very simple way by the use of check list. Specifically we examine the process of building plan approval adopted by a large municipal body in India and discuss the transformation that resulted when the same rule was implemented using checklists. The study is useful in the way that is shows that even without taking a difficult and risky route of process and rule changes, there are viable options that have the potential to improve public services significantly.

Published in:

Information Society (i-Society), 2010 International Conference on

Date of Conference:

28-30 June 2010