I will address the three levels (instances) of government I am directly affected by, the Municipal, the State and the Federal.
As a starter, it noticeable that the higher you get at the management chain, from Municipal to Federal, more social media channels are used.
In my particular case, in São Paulo (M) – São Paulo (S) – Brazil (F), the observation being made today, September 9th 2016:
- At Municipal level – 3 social media channels
- At State level – 5 social media channels
- At Federal level – 8 social media channels
The three used at Municipal level are also used at both other levels.
There are some observations to be made from this facts:
- The more people you have to address the more channels you need?
- Higher instances offices need more penetration?
- Higher instances offices have more money to spend on social media channel?
- Lower instances offices are less worried about reaching out to its citizens?
- Does having more social media channels indicate more transparency?
- Does having more social media channels indicate more intention of transparency?
- Higher instances offices have more to report?
- Should there be a unified approach, coordinated amongst all three instances?
- Is there more citizen engagement with more social media channels? What are the statistics? Are there statistics?
- Does social media channels guarantee interaction between government and citizens? Is this enough to guarantee citizen´s involvement?
- Is the government ready to deal with the supposedly enormous amount of incoming messages/queries social media generates? If not, what is the benefit of actually having it?
- Is the information being shared relevant? Is it made available to be easily understood?
I am not able to answer these questions at the present moment, but what I know is that as everything else in life, if you do not have anything to fear, you do not have anything to hide.
Transparency in private organizations have been implemented, and therefore it should also be implemented throughout all public organizations.
Transparency is a two-way street. If you are asking for it, you should also be ready to handle it coming your way.
Transparency at government level will make citizens trust more, it will should make public employees and the governments more accountable for spending the citizen´s tax money.
This will in turn prevent all sorts of claims by BOTH sides. Citizens will not be able to say: “I did not know”, and governments will not be able to say: “I/we didn´t do it”.
Proactive management and engagement from both sides should be envisaged as a good thing, for a society is formed not only by the citizens not employed as government agents/public servants.
Transparency is the easiest way to minimize corruption. Corruption will cannot be eliminated completely if conscientious citizens are not formed. And conscientious citizens will most definitely make good public servants aggregating into a decent government. – Christian Bittencourt, Brazil.