Public Administration Issues, 2024 (5) en-us Copyright 2024 Thu, 18 Apr 2024 15:19:17 +0300 INTRODUCTION PAST, PRESENT, AND FUTURE OF DIGITAL GOVERNMENT: INSIGHTS FROM CHINESE PRACTICES In the digital age, the progression of digital government models presents a nuanced problem that this study meticulously investigates. Contextually, the inception of digital government in China has transpired through three distinct phases, each marked by a characteristic emphasis: technology-oriented, mutual transparency-oriented, and people-oriented. The analysis underscores a critical shift in emphasis across these stages, from an initial concentration on technological deployment to a present focus on mutual transparency and citizen engagement. Despite the evident progress, an issue emerges around capturing and articulating these stages with precision and objectivity. In response to this problem, this study undertakes an in-depth examination of case studies pertinent to each phase, which unravels insights into their defining characteristics. The findings indicate a potential trajectory towards a digital government model that further accentuates public participation. The aim of this study is to deepen the comprehension of the evolution of digital government in China and to shed light on its potential future trajectory, thereby contributing significantly to the dialogue around policy formulation and the future development of digital governance. DEFENSE EXPENDITURES WITHIN THE FRAMEWORK OF POSITIVE EXTERNAL EFFECTS FROM THE PRODUCTION OF HIGH-TECH WEAPONS (THE CASE OF ARMENIA) The article explores the issues of defense spending optimization in Armenia from the point of view of possible positive externalities of the production of high-tech weapons. It attempts to answer the question of how to solve the well-known dilemma of “guns versus butter” for Armenia amid the current geopolitical and geoeconomic challenges.To achieve the objectives, the differences between the concepts of effectiveness and efficiency of defense spending were considered. The potential impact of the production of high-tech weapons on the economy and the military sector was discussed through the prism of the “exploration-exploitation” dilemma. Such an approach is aimed to emphasize the differences between the economic efficiency at different stages of new military technologies’ life cycle and the opportunity cost of military spending. As for possible positive externalities of the high-tech weapons production, an improvement in the balance of payments, relieving the public debt-servicing burden, developing human capital, increasing employment, creating and deepening bilateral and multilateral military-political and military-technical cooperation are presented as such in the article. However, peace and transfer of technology to other sectors of the economy, in defiance of the accepted approaches, have not been considered to the externalities of the high-tech weapons production.The study concluded that the redistribution of a part of defense spending to the high-tech sector, the ultimate goal of which is to gradually ease the burden of military spending for the state, can be the beginning of qualitative changes in terms of economic development and security duo to the positive externalities of innovation and mastery of high-tech industries. THE WORK OF DEVELOPMENT AGENCIES AND ITS EFFECT DURING THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC: THE CASE OF SERHAT DEVELOPMENT AGENCY The Development Agencies were established in 2006 in Türkiye to support regional development, with the budget transferred from the central government. The Development Agencies collaborate with public administrators, local governments, provincial administrations, universities, non-governmental organizations, and the private sector to adopt an effective governance model. The work of agencies in exceptional situations is also distinctive compared to other actors. It is crucial to evaluate the efforts of the Development Agencies in mitigating the social and economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and draw conclusions about their effectiveness in the region.The impact of a pandemic outbreak on the Development Agencies has not yet been researched. This study aims to evaluate the work of the Serhat Development Agency and the effect of this new process on the local development of the region during the pandemic period, which continues its activities in the provinces of Agrı, Ardahan, Kars and Iğdır covering the TRA2 region of Türkiye. The study was conducted using the qualitative method. In-depth interviews were utilized during the field research in the agency between 19–29 October 2021 and 18–22 Jan uary 2023. The results obtained show that the pandemic process has reduced the interaction of the agency with its stakeholders and new projects have not been supported, which had a negative impact on the development of the region. Agriculture continued without any interr uption during the pandemic. Negative effects were seen in the tourism, food, and service sectors, but no additional efforts were made to remedy them.  DETERMINANTS OF COVID-19 FATALITY RATES IN INDONESIA: A CONFIGURATIONAL ANALYSIS OF GOVERNMENT POLICIES AND SOCIETAL CONDITIONS This paper systematically identifies the determinants of COVID-19 death rates at the initial stages of the outbreak in Indonesia by considering configurations of government conditions (responsiveness, ability to control case rate, and capacity to cure infected people) and societal conditions (vulnerability and compliance). Configurational analysis using crisp-set QCA was employed to analyze these  sets of conditions and outcomes in 34 provinces throughout Indonesia. The results show that the high ability of local government to control the spread of the disease is a necessary and sufficient condition for a low death rate.However, the opposite condition (the low ability of government) is only necessary but not sufficient for a high fatality rate. To  create sufficient conditions  for a high death rate, the low ability of local governments to restrain the spread of the virus requires other specific conditions, particularly a low level of community obedience to the restriction policy. The present study highlights that the institutionalization of a new normal life during the pandemic through regulative, normative and cultural-cognitive mechanisms is of paramount importance. DOES CYBERLOAFING AFFECT WORK PERFORMANCE OF THE CIVIL SERVANTS? The COVID-19 pandemic has reshaped the operations of public sectors worldwide, compelling governments to impose nationwide lockdowns. This crisis prompted an immediate shift to Work from Home (WFH) policies for civil servants. Under this policy, work activities predominantly rely on information and communications technology (ICT). While ICTs have a positive impact on the efficiency of public service delivery, the use of technology and the internet has also introduced various adverse effects, such as cyberloafing and destructive behaviors. These negative influences on performance can ultimately impact service delivery. Against this background, this study aims to analyze the influence of cyberloafing on the work performance of civil servants during the WFH policy implementation. The study, for which 272 civil servants from diverse backgrounds were interviewed, reveals that development behavior significantly influences task performance and adaptive performance, while deviant behavior has a notable impact on all dimensions of work performance. These findings contribute to theoretical understanding, offer practical implications, and suggest directions for future research. EXPLORING EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT IN THE PUBLIC SECTOR: ANTECEDENTS, CONSEQUENCES AND STRATEGIES In the contemporary public sector, administrators seek innovative approaches to boost productivity, elevate service quality, and optimize resource allocation. Employee engagement (EE) stands out as a pivotal catalyst driving these transformative endeavors. Engaged employees approach their responsibilities with greater dedication and motivation, invest  more energy and effort, demonstrate a higher level of performance and contribute to the achievement of exceptional organizational outcomes. Therefore, to establish an effective framework for public administration, administrators must not only comprehend the factors influencing EE in the public sector and its outcomes but also proactively develop strategies to foster engagement among their workforce. This study aims to identify the fundamental antecedents and consequences of EE in the public sector while evaluating this concept from a strategic perspective. To achieve this aim, an extensive literature review is conducted, involving the systematic examination of existing studies published in the Web of Science (WoS) and Scopus databases on EE within the public sector. The original aspect of the study is to introduce a conceptual model that integrates the antecedents influencing EE, its resulting outcomes and potential strategies for cultivating EE. It is expected that the research findings  will both stimulate academic interest and provide insights for practitioners in the realm of public administration. CHANGE LEADERSHIP AND EMPLOYEE ATTITUDES FOR PLANNED ORGANIZATIONAL CHANGE IN DELTA STATE MINISTRY OF EDUCATION, ASABA, NIGERIA This study examines the influence of change leadership on employee support for an intentional organizational change in the Delta State Ministry of Education Asaba, Nigeria. The study employed a cross-sectional research methodology and a self-administered Likert-type questionnaire. Data for the study were obtained from employees who were undergoing through significant upheaval. The data collected was evaluated using structural equation model. The study found that essential change leadership qualities including communication and involvement aid in building employee support for change initiatives. The cognitive and behavioral reactions of the employees to the planned change was influenced by change leadership. Employees' cognitive assessments of and emotional reactions to the planned change event served as a mediating factor in the relationship between change leadership and behavioral intentions to support the planned change. When assessing planned organizational transformation efforts, leaders frequently pay more attention to how employees respond to the change than to the causes of those reactions. The significance of addressing employee attitudes as the first step toward desired change activities was emphasized by this study. This study adopted a multidimensional approach to attitudes and examined their hierarchy of impacts in order to more accurately describe the influence of change leadership on employee support for change. The study makes a number of suggestions, one of which is that leaders should boost employee morale prior to initiating change projects in order to increase the likelihood of success. In a world of rapid change and cultivation of adaptable mindsets, change leadership is essential. DRIVERS OF ONLINE TRUST IN COMMUNICATION WITH REGIONAL GOVERNMENT: EVIDENCE FROM ST. PETERSBURG Regional governments commonly use e-government technologies when setting out to deliver value to the public. While the use of technology has become a standard of modern public management, risks and limitations associated with its use, such as lack of trust from constituents, need to be carefully examined in light of city experiences, an endeavor that is still scarcely undertaken in the context of smart city initiatives. This paper examines trust regarding online platform usage in St. Petersburg, Russia. The research questionnaire was based on a set of variables that characterize the experience of using information technologies in different areas and in terms of attitudes towards them. A survey of 800 St. Petersburg residents was conducted (the sampling error does not exceed 4%, the confidence level is 95%) and statistical methods (correlation analysis, multiple regression, principal component analysis) were applied. Findings suggest that online trust is multidimensional and influenced by factors related to positive perceptions of institutions, political efficacy of online initiatives, and satisfactory past experience. The implications of these findings and future directions are presented in the context of the e-government research agenda.  PUBLIC-PRIVATE PARTNERSHIP MODEL TO MANAGE COASTAL TOURISM IN INDONESIA: CAN IT IMPROVE THE COMMUNITY WELFARE? The public-private partnership and local communities play an important role in the development of coastal tourism. The welfare of coastal communities depends on the synergy of the partnership built. The study aimed to determine (1) the management of coastal tourism by public-private partnerships and local communities, (2) the balance between the public-private partnerships and local communities in coastal tourism management, and (3) the contribution of coastal tourism management to community welfare.  A mixed method approach was used in the research. Data were collected through in-depth interviews, observations, semi-open questionnaires, and documentation. The results showed that the management of coastal tourism developed through a public-private partnership between private institutions, regional governments, and community groups was properly implemented. The balance of partnerships between the Forest Village Community Organization (Lembaga Masyarakat Desa Hutan), Tourism Awareness Group (Kelompok Sadar Wisata or POKDARWIS), and local communities was well implemented in many community activities around the tourism area. The public-private partnership established with a mutually beneficial agreement was able to improve the community welfare.