Local Government

Wajeeha Shaikh, John Burgess

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


The Australian public sector incorporates federal, state, and local government agencies. It is one of the largest employment sectors in the economy incorporating a range of occupations. Technology is key to the development of many sections of the public sector, for example the defence sector is driven by technological developments in hardware and systems. Given the range and coverage of the public sector, this chapter will examine AI and technological developments only in local government. The public sector is too large and diverse to capture in a single chapter, and while local government is immediate and spread across the country, it is under researched when compared to state and federal government. As with all areas of the public sector, local government has been subject to the reforms and pressures of new public sector management to improve service delivery and achieve cost reductions and efficiencies. These changes have also been associated with a range of organisational developments such as privatisation, public-private partnerships, and shared services. Information technology (IT) and automation have the potential to support both the quality and efficiency objectives of local government. However, there are challenges around the impact of the structural and technological change on employment, especially in regions; issues include the COVID impact on finances and the demand for services as well as skills development in the sector.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Fourth Industrial Revolution
Subtitle of host publicationWhat does it mean for Australian Industry?
PublisherSpringer Nature
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9789811616143
ISBN (Print)9789811616136
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2021


  • COVID19
  • Local government
  • Managerialism
  • New public sector management
  • Outsourcing
  • Public goods
  • Shared services
  • Structural reforms


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