COVID-19 AND E-GOVERNMENT IN PAKISTAN: ANALYSIS OF MOBILE PHONE APPS
Application of information and communication technologies in the daily business of life alike by governments, civil society, the corporate sector and by the private individual is referred to as e-governance. E-governance is convenient and enhances efficiency and transparency but requires an enabling environment that demands heavy investments in terms of resources by governments, organizations and private individuals to benefit from. That is why transition to e-governance is not that fast as to harness its full potential. Particularly low and middle income countries are not ready for universal transition to e-governance regarding public service delivery. However, covid-19 pandemic has reinforced its demand and rejuvenated the enthusiasm for transition to e-governance as it best copes with the pandemic. Instead of physical visits to public offices or to the market, citizens can avail services online staying at home through technology mediated electronic devices and the internet that best complies the standard operating procedures of the covid-19. Pakistan government is also well on track for e-governance and offers certain public services through mobile phone apps and web apps along with other means but still needs a long way to go for a full scale transition. This paper studies Pakistan’s readiness for transition to e-governance and public perception on convenience, efficiency and transparency e-governance brings, by investigating the usage experience of mobile phone apps Pakistan government has launched before and during the pandemic. This study is based on mixed methods approach of primary and secondary data collection (both quantitative and qualitative) including the review of relevant sources available online.