Linking citizen satisfaction with e-government and trust in government

Eric W. Welch, Charles C. Hinnant, M. Jae Moon

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

798 Scopus citations


This article asks how Internet use, citizen satisfaction with e-government, and citizen trust in government are interrelated. We first review the literature on trust and explore how radical information technologies may work to alter the production or maintenance of trust. We then develop hypotheses about how citizens' experience with e-government, satisfaction with e-government and government Web sites, and trust in government are interrelated. Moreover, the model for e-government and Web site satisfaction incorporates citizen perspectives on electronic transaction, transparency, and interactivity. Using data obtained from the Council on Excellence in Government, we then develop and test a two-stage multiple-equation model that simultaneously predicts experience, satisfaction, and trust. Findings indicate that government Web site use is positively associated with e-government satisfaction and Web site satisfaction and that e-government satisfaction is positively associated with trust in government. We also find that while citizens are generally satisfied with the electronic provision of information (transparency), there is some dissatisfaction with the transaction and interactivity of Web sites. We conclude that electronic government strategies - transaction, transparency, and interactivity - are important factors that directly affect e-government satisfaction and indirectly affect trust. Individuals who use government Web sites are not only critical consumers but also demanding citizens.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)371-391
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Public Administration Research and Theory
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 2005
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Public Administration
  • Marketing


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