This article explores how alternative multichannel service provision can improve the way in which governments and citizens interact. Improvement is necessary because there is a gap between the communication channels that governmental bodies prefer and those that relate to citizens’ preferences.
Obviously, the government chooses channels based on their cost efficiency, while citizens may choose channels depending on availability, context, and trust. Based on the results of a survey of 4,606 civil servants in Kazakhstan, the authors consider which channels civil servants use to interact with the public, explore the role of digital tools in relation to public involvement in government decision-making, and analyze how this affects the effectiveness of the provision of public services.
The results of this study show that the effectiveness of communication directly depends on the availability of communication channels. When communicating with government agencies in Kazakhstan, the population uses well-known formal platforms in most cases. In addition, preference is given to personal communication channels, while public communication channels are not used to inform the population. In internal communications, civil servants use formal channels of communication. Finally, lines of personal communication are more developed in local executive bodies.
This research was funded by the Science Committee of the Ministry of Science and Higher Education of the Republic of Kazakhstan (AP14872210).
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