The Impact of Technology on the Democratic StatecraftAn Overview of Technology on the Democratic StatecraftIn the last few decades, there have been continuations of victories across the world for democracy, public participation and human rights through technology. Within these democratic political systems, technologies have been exploited not only to promote democracies but also as a tool, that would connect people to the government. Just as Farisi (2016) noted, technology on statecraft create a system of governance that borrows the definition of government for people and by the people (Noveck 2015). Tracing back, a growing awareness to create technology that would allow citizen participate effectively in policy formulation, the General Assembly of the United States in 1975 outlined some of the policies that has since enhanced democracy (Noveck 2015).
The assembly noted that to have effect on democratic statecraft, countries needed to adopt what they termed as ‘Declaration on the Use of Scientific and Technological Progress in the Interest of Peach for the Benefit of Mankind (Crabtree et al. 2015). The declaration called for all state machineries to allow technological advancement in their countries that would in turn, favour citizen participation in decision-making and policy implementation in their countries (Bardhan & Wood 2015).
In the light of potential danger to deny citizens the right to use technology as a tool for engagement with the government, Brock (2015) suggested a solution that has since been adopted by governments such as South Africa. In the research, the author noted that governments need to develop technological tools that ensure that member of the public share their opinion and views through government online portal.
His sentiments were however, rebutted by McCarthy (2015) who noted that technology can only be adopted to favour public engagement with the government is the technology meets prerequisite needs of both parties. That is, technology should serve as a tool that creates democracy but should not weaken autonomous institutions. Citizen engagement in different levels of government in the last quarter of the twentieth century presented a baffling array of complex transitional state of technological advancement. These multifaceted approach in citizen engagement include among other things, the role of technology, which according to studies such as Livingstone (2016), is seen as a benefit factor that is presenting against the dangers and risks uphold advancement of technology in running the government and engaging member of the public through the same technology.
Recent studies that have examined countries such China, United States of America, Russia, United Arabs Emirates and Saudi Arabia have termed this approach technology in democratic statecraft (Thomson 2017; Livingstone 2016). However, studies continue to note that the adoption of technology poses very delicate situation, particularly when it comes to decisions that related to technology.
For instance, Connolly (2016) argues that researches only concentrate on the positive impacts of technology on the democratic statecraft. These researches are oblivious of the fact that some of the most challenging issues arise in developed and developing democracies because the technology deploys or advances to outpace the ability of government created institutions to determine the extent to which the technology undermines their autonomies (Nordberg 2017). Studies continue to note that generally, the rate of technology has for long, outstripped the abilities to assess as well as evaluate the impacts it has on democratic statecraft and those of institutional monitoring and control.
However, this study is interested in the development of a framework that enables citizen engagement in decision-making and for that case, the impact of technology is confined to two issues; democratic statecraft and citizen engagement. From this perspective, we regard technology from Nordberg (2017) definition who observed that with regard to its impact on the democratic statecraft, citizens regard technology as the sum total of human tools as well as methods created by the government of people to control their engagement with state when it comes to policy development, execution and decision-making.