Engaging through technology: the role of administrative culture and mandates

Fengxiu Zhang, Mary K. Feeney

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Although information communication technologies (ICTs) offer new possibilities for civic engagement, governments have had limited success enacting ICTs to promote participation. We investigate how administrative culture and formal institutions are related to adoption and use of ICTs for bureaucratic and participatory purposes. Using data from a national survey of U.S. municipal departments, we find that prioritizing bureaucratic over participatory values is negatively related to the adoption of ICTs and use for participation. Legal mandates increase adoption but not use for participation. The findings show the critical role of administrative culture and raise questions about using legal mandates to promote participation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1423-1442
Number of pages20
JournalPublic Management Review
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2 2020


  • ICT enactment
  • administrative culture
  • civic engagement
  • formal mandate

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Administration


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