David Lazer

David Lazer is Associate Professor of Public Policy at the John F. Kennedy School of Government and Director and founder of the Program on Networked Governance at Harvard University. He is the editor of DNA and the Criminal Justice System: The Technology of Justice (MIT Press, 2004).

  • Governance and Information Technology

    Governance and Information Technology

    From Electronic Government to Information Government

    Viktor Mayer-Schönberger and David Lazer

    Experts discuss moving beyond the notion of electronic government and its focus on technology and efficiency to a broader concept of “information government” that incorporates the role of information flows within government, between government and citizens, and among citizens themselves.

    Developments in information and communication technology and networked computing over the past two decades have given rise to the notion of electronic government, most commonly used to refer to the delivery of public services over the Internet. This volume argues for a shift from the narrow focus of “electronic government” on technology and transactions to the broader perspective of information government—the information flows within the public sector, between the public sector and citizens, and among citizens—as a way to understand the changing nature of governing and governance in an information society. The chapters discuss the interplay between recent technological developments and evolving information flows, and the implications of different information flows for efficiency, political mobilization, and democratic accountability. The chapters are accompanied by short case studies from around the world, which cover such topics as electronic government efforts in Singapore and Switzerland, the U.S Environmental Protection Agency's effort to solicit input on planned regulations over the Internet, and online activism "cyberprotesting" globalization.

    Contributors Robert D. Behn, Maria Christina Binz-Scharf, Herbert Burkert, Lorenzo Cantoni, Cary Coglianese, Martin J. Eppler, Jane E. Fountain, Monique Girard, Åke Grönlund, Matthew Hindman, Edwin Lau, David Lazer, Viktor Mayer-Schönberger, Ines Mergel, Gopal Raman, David Stark, Sandor Vegh, Darrell M. West

    • Hardcover $37.00 £30.00
    • Paperback $19.75 £15.99
  • DNA and the Criminal Justice System

    DNA and the Criminal Justice System

    The Technology of Justice

    David Lazer

    Is DNA technology the ultimate diviner of guilt or the ultimate threat to civil liberties? Over the past decade, DNA has been used to exonerate hundreds and to convict thousands. Its expanded use over the coming decade promises to recalibrate significantly the balance between collective security and individual freedom. For example, it is possible that law enforcement DNA databases will expand to include millions of individuals not convicted of any crime. Moreover, depending on what rules govern access, such databases could also be used for purposes that range from determining paternity to assessing predispositions to certain diseases or behaviors. Thus the use of DNA technology will involve tough trade-offs between individual and societal interests.

    This book, written by a distinguished group of authors including U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer, explores the ethical, procedural, and economic challenges posed by the use of DNA evidence as well as future directions for the technology. After laying the conceptual historical, legal, and scientific groundwork for the debate, the book considers bioethical issues raised by the collection of DNA, including the question of control over DNA databases. The authors then turn to the possible genetic bases of human behavior and the implications of this still-unresolved issue for the criminal justice system. Finally, the book examines the current debate over the many roles that DNA can and should play in criminal justice.

    • Hardcover $67.00 £55.00
    • Paperback $19.75 £15.99

Contributor

  • Connecting Democracy

    Connecting Democracy

    Online Consultation and the Flow of Political Communication

    Stephen Coleman and Peter M. Shane

    An investigation of the effect of government online forums on democratic practices in the United States and Europe.

    The global explosion of online activity is steadily transforming the relationship between government and the public. The first wave of change, “e-government,” enlisted the Internet to improve management and the delivery of services. More recently, “e-democracy” has aimed to enhance democracy itself using digital information and communication technology. One notable example of e-democratic practice is the government-sponsored (or government-authorized) online forum for public input on policymaking. This book investigates these “online consultations” and their effect on democratic practice in the United States and Europe, examining the potential of Internet-enabled policy forums to enrich democratic citizenship.

    The book first situates the online consultation phenomenon in a conceptual framework that takes into account the contemporary media environment and the flow of political communication; then offers a multifaceted look at the experience of online consultation participants in the United States, the United Kingdom, and France; and finally explores the legal architecture of U.S. and E. U. online consultation. As the contributors make clear, online consultations are not simply dialogues between citizens and government but constitute networked communications involving citizens, government, technicians, civil society organizations, and the media. The topics examined are especially relevant today, in light of the Obama administration's innovations in online citizen involvement.

    • Hardcover $54.00 £45.00
    • Paperback $9.75 £7.99