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Carlea Holl-Jensen||cholljen@umd.edu


HCIL-2002-12

Ceaparu, I., Shneiderman, B. (May 2002)
Improving Web-based Civic Information Access: A Case Study of the 50 US States
Proc. 2002 International Symposium on Technology and Society (ISTAS'02), IEEE. [Published Version]
HCIL-2002-12, CS-TR-4372, UMIACS-TR-2002-52, ISR-TR-2005-31

An analysis of the home pages of all fifty U. S. states reveals great variety in key design features that influence efficacy. Some states had excessively large byte counts that would slow users connected by commonly-used 56K modems. Many web sites had low numbers of or poorly organized links that would make it hard for citizens to find what they were interested in. Features such as search boxes, privacy policies, online help, or contact information need to be added by several states. Our analysis concludes with ten recommendations and finds many further opportunities for individual states to improve their websites. However still greater benefits will come through collaboration among the states that would lead to consistency, appropriate tagging, and common tools.


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