The Case of the Mexican E-Procurement System CompraNet
Carlos J. Navarrete
Mr. Carlos Jaso arrived in the conference room at 7:45 am. His presentation about CompraNet was the third presentation of the track “Success in e-Government,” scheduled from 8:00 am to 10:30 am. Not being a scholar, he felt some pressure about givingan academic presentation on CompraNet. Still, after ten years of leading the project, he had given presentations about this e-procurement system dozens of times to foreign ministers, high ranking politicians, top ranking government officials and hundreds of users. Furthermore, he had asked his staff to design his presentation for an academic audience, and he had reviewed it several times. Theprevious night he studied the presentation for two hours because during the reception party he learned that the projects scheduled for the first day of the conference were regarded as the most important projects of the conference.
Shortly after he arrived, he met the other three presenters and the chair of the track, who explained the conference procedures stating that each presenter had 20minutes to present his or her projects, including time for answering questions from the audience. The chair confirmed the order of the presentations according to Figure 1.
|Time |Presentation |
|8:00 – 8:20 |GovBenefits.gov: A valuable e-Government Tool for Citizens|
|8:20 – 8:40 |E-Government public-private partnership: The “Gorod” payment system in Siberia |
|8:40 –9:00 |CompraNet: E-Procurement and the Success of e-Government |
|9:00 –9:20 |ChileCompra: E-Governmentand Economic Growth |
Figure 1. E-Government Track
The GovBenefits.gov System
Patrick Pizzela presented GovBenefits.gov, a Web site oriented to help users identify their eligibility for the best benefit program. GovBenefits.gov is part of the e-Government program promoted by President Bush to facilitate theinteraction between citizens and business with government agencies. GovBenefits.gov is the official Web site for more than 400 federal benefit programs. Before April 2002, when the site started operations, information about federal benefits was spread across 31 million Web pages hosted by hundreds of sites.
Carlos Jaso listened to the presenter, imagining how the project had beenjustified and comparing that justification with the actual impact of the system. In three years, the presenter stated, more than 3 million users—veterans, students, farmers, children and seniors among others— were able to identify the benefit programs that were relevant to them. By 2005 GovBenefit.gov received 300 thousand visitors per month, and the total number of visitors so far reached 17 millionpeople. The site had evolved to work with customized connections, which allows the reuse of GovBenefit’s functionality to develop and implement new Web sites. For example, in 2004, GovLoans.gov was designed with the Department of Education’s reusing GovBenefits architecture. This architecture secures access to consolidated federal information.
The Gorod Payment System
William McHenrypresented the “Gorod” payment system in Siberia. While William McHenry was loading his MS Power Point presentation, Carlos Jaso was thinking about how to evaluate such a different e-government project. He was preparing to identify common benefits and common barriers. William McHenry started his presentation by introducing the problem faced by citizens in several Russian cities at the end of the...