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Historically, governments have measured the performance of IT initiatives with quantifiable, financially based outcomes, such as reduced transaction costs or cost avoidance. While important, economic returns are only one dimension of a government’s effectiveness. The social and political impact an IT initiative can have on the daily life of citizens and constituents is also essential, such as reducing crime rates or providing adequate child welfare services. These advantages are often the criteria by which citizens judge the effectiveness of their administration but are extremely difficult to quantify.

Historically, governments have measured the performance of IT initiatives with quantifiable, financially based outcomes, such as reduced transaction costs or cost avoidance. While important, economic returns are only one dimension of a government’s effectiveness. The social and political impact an IT initiative can have on the daily life of citizens and constituents is also essential, such as reducing crime rates or providing adequate child welfare services. These advantages are often the criteria by which citizens judge the effectiveness of their administration but are extremely difficult to quantify.

SAP AG together with the Center for Technology in Government (CTG), developed a global initiative termed “Public ROI” in order to create and communicate a methodology for defining, measuring and communicating the economic, social and political returns of government and public services programs.

For their study, SAP AG and CTG identified five governing bodies to engage in the development of the Public ROI framework, including the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Service New Brunswick (Canada), Washington State Digital Archives, the Ministry of Finance in Austria, and the Federal Government of Israel (Merkava Project). The study analyzed key needs, challenges, research areas and approaches for the development of a universally accepted method of Public ROI analysis.

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What is PUBLIC ROI? What does PUBLIC ROI mean? PUBLIC ROI meaning, definition & explanation

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