Mechanisms underpinning the usage of e-government services by businesses: A proposal based on previous empirical research




e-government, e-services, acceptance, adoption, mechanisms, businesses, critical realism


For many years, the public sector has been undergoing digital transformation. Information and communication technologies (ICT) have offered new ways of interaction between governments and their constituents. However, governments face different challenges to migrate users towards digital channels and electronic documents, which are believed to be more cost-efficient for all stakeholders. Despite a plethora of empirical research conducted towards the identification of factors that influence e-government services usage by businesses, there seems to be a lack of 'holistic' understanding in the absence of systematic literature reviews. This paper aims to contribute by hypothesizing a set of mechanisms based on a critical realist process of retroduction. We argue that the factors identified in previous research are a manifestation of mechanisms. Such mechanisms might explain businesses’ usage of ICT when interacting with governments, whether in the context of incidental situations or regular administrative tasks (through online self-service applications) or regular exchange of information (through inter-organizational e-services).


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Author Biographies

Martha Liliana Correa Ospina, Universidad Nacional de Colombia

Martha Correa is a PhD Candidate at the Department of Systems and Industrial Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Universidad Nacional de Colombia-Bogotá. Her doctoral research is related to the uptake of e-government services by businesses (focused on micro businesses). Her research interests focus on the uptake, assessment, and value of information technology in organizations (particularly, public sector).

Deepak Saxena, Birla Institute of Technology & Science Pilani

Deepak Saxena is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Management, Birla Institute of Technology and Science Pilani. He holds a PhD from Trinity College Dublin (Ireland). His areas of interest include digital transformation, public services, and critical realism. His works have appeared in journals such as Australasian Journal of Information Systems, Electronic Journal of IS Evaluation, Electronic Journal of e-Government, Irish Journal of Management, Journal of Information Science, and Journal of Information Technology Teaching Cases.

Beatriz Helena Díaz Pinzón, Universidad Nacional de Colombia

Beatriz Díaz is an Associate Professor at the Business School, Faculty of Economic Sciences, Universidad Nacional de Colombia-Bogotá. She is a Systems Engineer from the same University, and she holds a Master of management of Information Systems and Organizations, and a PhD in Management Sciences from the University of Grenoble (France). She is the director of the GISTIC research group. Her research areas include management information systems and education.




How to Cite

Correa Ospina, M. L., Saxena, D., & Díaz Pinzón, B. H. (2021). Mechanisms underpinning the usage of e-government services by businesses: A proposal based on previous empirical research. JeDEM - EJournal of EDemocracy and Open Government, 13(2), 154–183.



Research Papers