Determinants of digital innovation in the public sector

Sounman Hong, Sun Hyoung Kim, Myungjung Kwon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


This study explores the determinants of digital innovation in the public sector. Focusing specifically on new digital technologies, such as big data, artificial intelligence, Internet of things, and augmented reality, we explained the wide variation in how Korean local governments used these technologies to transform their services. We found support for four theoretical mechanisms. First, our findings support the existence of demand-pull innovation in the public sector: public organizations respond to citizen demands or needs for innovation. Second, we also find support for an electoral incentive hypothesis, which posits that local governments' motivation for digital innovation is influenced by local politicians' electoral incentives. Third, our results show the existence of isomorphic pressure as a driver for public sector innovation: public organizations emulate their neighbors in adopting innovative practices. Fourth, the results support the upper echelons theory, as younger policymakers are more active innovators.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101723
JournalGovernment Information Quarterly
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Oct

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Korea and the National Research Foundation of Korea ( NRF-2018S1A5A2A03030694 ).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Elsevier Inc.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Library and Information Sciences
  • Law


Dive into the research topics of 'Determinants of digital innovation in the public sector'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this