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Issue № 80. June 2020

On Problems of Informatization in Bureaucratic Systems and Development of National Information Systems

Gennady L. Kupryashin, Alexander E. Schramm

Gennady L. Kupryashin — DSc (Political Sciences), Professor, School of Public Administration, Lomonosov Moscow State University, Moscow, Russian Federation.
ORCID ID: 0000-0002-0438-7957

Alexander E. Schramm — Principal Consultant at SAP, postgraduate student, School of Public Administration, Lomonosov Moscow State University, Moscow, Russian Federation.

The authors suggest rethinking informatization on the basis of general management theory and its problems in contrast to pure data-centric and technocratic approaches, which tend to dominate modern scientific discourse. First section introduces criticism of data-centric approaches to informatization of public administration. Second section deals with specifics of informatization in bureaucratic systems and includes research of scale effects, which impact informatization potentially making national information systems development close to impossible. Scale effects are analyzed for key actors of informatization: suppliers, customers, and bureaucracy itself. Third section includes research on key characteristics of national information systems rooted in the following principles of informatization: data-centricity, network-centricity, and chain-of-command-centricity. It argues necessity for combination of top-down design, on the one hand, with evolutionary bottom-up “raising” of national information systems, on the other hand. Different scenarios for integration of management processes in national information systems are considered: scenario for vertical integration with various degrees of participation for managed systems in decision making and decision implementation processes and scenario for horizontal-vertical integration. Vertical integration of management processes is achieved by implementation of digital platforms, in which data is centralized, while horizontal-vertical integration is achieved by the introduction of multi-agent networks and platforms with the separation of data into distributed localized private data and societal data. Development of national information systems is suggested to be conducted with the help of domestic so called elemental base (hardware and network equipment, UI and application logic) and without technical and architectural dependency on the existing Internet technologies. The authors believe that national information systems development would help reduce agent costs associated with principal-agent model of public administration and would lead to institutional development of participatory governing.


Public administration, bureaucratic systems, national information systems, evolutionary economics, participatory management, principal-agent model.

DOI: 10.24411/2070-1381-2019-10062

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