Standardized but flexible information exchange for networked public administrations: A method

Erwin Folmer, Martin Matzner*, Michael Räckers, Hendrik Scholta, Jörg Becker

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: Governmental institutions must cooperate with other organizations across institutional boundaries to achieve high-quality service offerings. The required cooperation may lead to complex networks, including several of the thousands of public administrations in the many federal layers of a single country. This paper aims to address the key challenge of the proper management of the information exchange between networked actors, which is generally conducted by means of forms. Design/methodology/approach: Following the design science research paradigm, this research develops a method that assists in the design and maintenance of forms in public administrations. Findings: Discussions in the project’s focus groups add evidence to the researchers’ expectation that the method developed in this study improves the quality of forms while reducing the effort required for their design and maintenance. Research limitations/implications: This paper includes an evaluation of the approach based on qualitative feedback from the project’s stakeholders, although the implementation of the workflows and procedures is subject to future work that evaluates the approach in a variety of practical settings. Practical implications: The method developed in this paper allows public administrations and legislative authorities to design and manage forms in a cooperative way. Software developers can assume the existence of information structures. The approach extends the BOMOS standardization framework to the operational level. Originality/value: The main contribution of this paper is the development of a novel method that will change how information exchange is managed in public administrations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)239-255
Number of pages17
JournalTransforming Government: People, Process and Policy
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 16 May 2016


  • Document
  • Form
  • Government
  • Information exchange
  • Public administration
  • Standardization
  • NLA


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