Local e-governance in
Beginning in 1997 with the State-level Informatics
System for Strengthening the Decentralized Plan
Implementation (SLIDE), government decision-makers
throughout India realized the important role that ICTs
would play in modern governance.
Focused on creating efficient and responsive
mechanisms for governance at the local level, the
SLIDE project employed a variety of ICTs to help local
institutions mitigate the transition to a
decentralized governing system that is unique to the
project, which has evolved into what is now known as
the Information Kerala Mission, seeks to computerize
and establish a wide area network (WAN) to connect the
1,215 local governing bodies throughout the state
Background and implementation
The Information Kerala Mission (IKM), which has
become a model for ICT development in local governance
throughout India, seeks to equip local governing
bodies with the infrastructure and skills necessary to
leverage the power of modern ICTs.
The Mission encourages participatory
development and deployment of ICTs that are
contextually relevant to local community users.
By providing support for local entrepreneurship
and training, the Mission has evolved into the largest
Indian initiative to focus on the creation of a
Beyond creating a state-wide WAN, the key
objectives of the Mission are to develop a mechanism
for monitoring the implementation of development plans
of the local bodies, computerize the office operations
and public service delivery through an easy-to-use
interface, establish a micro-level developmental
information systems for improved local planning, and
provide technical support and training to local
government personnel, including elected
In an effort to demystify ICTs, the IKM has created
a variety of innovative training tools to help local
governments modernize their operations.
To ensure that the more than 22,000 trainees
receive relevant content, the training seminars are
given in local languages, predominantly Malayalam.
In the border panchayats (locales),
Tamil and Kannada versions of software and training
material are being developed.
The lessons vary across different target groups
depending on their role, but generally they cover
topics relating to computer fundamentals (e.g. word
processing), governance, database management and using
the Internet as an information resource.
Such training will help the local governing
bodies improve and streamline the administration of
citizen services, public works and general management
As the forces of globalization sweeps across the
world, it is essential that ICTs be demystified and
deployed with the interests of local communities in
on a participatory methodology, the IKM has embarked
on what could be the biggest technology
literacy-building programme in India.
By engaging Government officials and members of
civil society, the IKM initiative promises to
strengthen Kerala’s position as a high-technology
centre in the country, while enhancing the states’
profile in the global economy.
For further information, see the
SPU New Initiatives Programme
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WSIS Outcome Documents