Government and the global digital transformation: the other side of the mirror


The discussion on government and its transformation is a part of a broader and well-established in social sciences debate on politics, the policymaking process, institutions, people embodying these institutions, as well as on ideas and ideology. The inroads of information and communication technology (ICT) and the broadening of the spectre, in which certain government functions can be aided by ICT-enhanced solutions, triggered the emergence of a highly potent strand of research best captured by the terms ‘e-government’ or ‘digital government’. While the ‘classic’ debate on government is prone to use classic conceptual approaches to the study of government and politics, the digital government research features a strong preference to engage with the intricacies of the ICT domain, frequently at the expense of the political process. Considering that the government is “of the people, by the people, for the people” (Lincoln, 1863), whereas the delivery of peace, justice and strong institutions is the key set of the government’s objectives, in times best characterized by volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity (VUCA), it is necessary that these two strands of research come much closer together. In other words, it is necessary to refurbish bridges between the classic political science-based research on government, including public policy approach, and the ICT-driven perspective on government and its public service delivery. In this way, it should be possible to identify, name, and explore issues, processes and mechanisms that mar policymaking and governance (be it at local, regional, national, global levels) today, thus obstructing the delivery of justice, peace, strong institutions, prosperity and wellbeing. This Special Issue will be an opportunity to stimulate research and engage policymakers in a debate on issues and questions that impose themselves on us all as we observe and/or engage in developments shaping our world today. This includes most profoundly the war in Ukraine and the international community’s response to it, in terms of discourse, communication and actions; by default, all ICT mediated. From a different vantage point, in context of pervasive digitalization and the debate on the quality-of-service provision, it is necessary to ask the question of where do governments stand, i.e. which obstacles they face, which failures they report (or do not), and what could be done about it? Beyond that, there is also, for instance, the question of big data and innovation, i.e. how the government’s (and the regulator’s) focus on data and specific approaches to data protection impacts the innovation process, including the propensity to innovate, the capacity to innovate, and investment in innovation. Amidst the global digital transformation, the seemingly simple question of the government delivering on peace, justice and strong institutions, turns into an irreconcilable conundrum defined by notions such as state power, raison d’étre, the degree of government intervention in the economy; the nature of the global order, including global governance, the clashing of vested national interests, the frequently unintended implications of domestic and international regulatory frameworks. Finally, in times of the ever more complex value-chains and pervasive dependence of our societies (economy and individual consumers) on undisturbed supply-chains, it is imperative to ask about the role of the government in this process too. Whereas digital technologies and platforms create leverage to improve the work of the government, the same technologies spur new challenges that require that the government and its capacity to deliver on its key objectives are rethought. To achieve that it is necessary to identify, document, and critically examine issues that are contentious, or rarely talked about in public. This Special Issue seeks to do just that. The Guest editors of this Special Issue encourage submissions from scholars intrigued by either of topics falling within this broadly defined field. A reflection on the role of digital technology in the so defined context is encouraged. All theoretical and methodological (both qualitative & quantitative) approaches are equally appreciated, and we particularly welcome multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary submissions that cover different issues relevant to government, public policy, public administration, service delivery, platform economy, dark web, sanctions, innovation, provide evidence-based insights on the theme of the special issue.

List of topic areas

  • Global digital transformation and the capacity of the government to embrace it;
  • Case-studies of failed attempts of digitalization of the government and public service delivery;
  • The government as the regulator in context of the global digital transformation: impact on policies, markets, society;
  • The government and the (modern) warfare: digital technology, communication;
  • The government and the platform economy: is all gold that shines?
  • The government, digitalization and justice, civil liberties, and peace;
  • The government and big data;
  • Digital autonomy/sovereignty and its ramifications;
  • The global view on the government and digital transformation, including geopolitics, first mover advantage, supply chain, international trade, innovation, etc.;
  • Smartification and its facets

Submissions Information

Submissions are made using ScholarOne Manuscripts. Registration and access are available at:

Author guidelines must be strictly followed. Please see:

Please be advised that the journal adheres to very strict word count requirements of max. 6000 words. Authors should select (from the drop-down menu) the special issue title at the appropriate step in the submission process, i.e. in response to “Please select the issue you are submitting to”.

Submitted articles must not have been previously published, nor should they be under consideration for publication anywhere else, while under review for this journal.

Key deadlines

Opening date for manuscripts submissions: 17/06/2022

Closing date for manuscripts submission: 01/12/2022

Guest Editor

Anna Visvizi

SGH Warsaw School of Economics, Poland, & Effat University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

[email protected]