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Many hands make light work: towards a framework of digital co-production to co-creation on social platforms
journal contributionposted on 2020-01-01, 00:00 authored by Lubna AlamLubna Alam
PurposeRecent technological advances have enabled consumers and citizens to contribute to organizational processes through co-production and co-creation in ways that challenge traditional co-production. However, the practices and capabilities for value co-creation are less understood, particularly in an increasingly networked social government ecosystem. The purpose of this research is to examine the enablement of new digital co-production practices in social media platforms (SMPs) and theorize SMP-enabled digital co-production vis-à-vis traditional co-production for public sector.Design/methodology/approachPrimarily using principles of interpretivist approaches, a qualitative content analysis of communication practices (i.e. genres) observed within Australian government Facebook pages was carried out to examine the salient digital forms of co-production practices.FindingsSMPs enable new practices in digital co-production for public sector (information dissemination, Q&A, feedback and co-creation), ranging from lower to higher intensity in terms of resource integration, scale of contributions, engagement and extent of relationship vis-à-vis traditional co-production.Research limitations/implicationsThis research is bounded by its geographical emphasis on Australian Federal government. Hence, the results may not be readily transferable to other contexts.Practical implicationsOur framework offers an array of choices for digital co-production strategies to suit agency's focus and goals for engagement in the Facebook Pages. As agencies progress to reach higher intensity co-production, public engagement and impact increases.Originality/valueThe paper contributes to co-production in social government ecosystem by increasing the theoretical and practical understanding of new form of SMP-enabled digital co-production defined as “small-scale, repetitive, user-driven co-production that is flexible, durable, ad-hoc, and sporadic, where many hands make light work”. The proposed “co-production to co-creation” framework provides valuable guideline for enhancing public service provision via SMPs.