Public participation in the Geoweb era: Geosocial media use in local government
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Advances in spatially enabled information and communication technologies (ICTs) have provided governments with the potential to enhance public participation and to collaborate with citizens. This dissertation critically assesses this potential and identifies the opportunities and challenges for local governments to embark on emerging geo-enabled practices. This dissertation first proposes a new typology for classifying geo-enabled practices related to public participation (termed here as geo-participation) and demonstrates the emerging opportunities presented by geo-participation to improve government-citizen collaboration and government operations. This dissertation then provides in-depth examinations of geosocial media as an exemplar geo-participation practice. The first empirical study assesses the potential of repurposing geosocial media data to gauge public opinions. The study suggests that geosocial media can help identify geographies of public perceptions concerning public facilities and services and have the potential to complement other methods of gauging public sentiment. The second empirical study assesses the usefulness of geosocial media for sharing non-emergency issues and identifies an important opportunity of enabling citizen collaboration for reporting and sharing non-emergency issues. Altogether, this dissertation makes several conceptual, empirical, and practical contributions to local government adoption of geo-participation. Conceptually, the proposed typology lays the foundation for researching and implementing geo-participation practices. Empirically, this dissertation tells a story of opportunities and challenges that sheds light on how local governments may adopt geosocial media to solicit citizen input and enable new forms of government-citizen interaction. Practically, this dissertation develops a tool for processing text-based citizen input and models of implementing geosocial media reporting that can help local government develop proper strategies of adopting geosocial media.
Cite this version of the work
Shanqi Zhang (2018). Public participation in the Geoweb era: Geosocial media use in local government. UWSpace. http://hdl.handle.net/10012/13433