The journey so far

ICEGOV stands for International Conference on Theory and Practice of Electronic Governance. It was conceived in 2007 as an annual gathering to bring together academia, governments, international organisations, civil society, and industry to share the latest insights and experiences in the theory and practice of Electronic Governance (now more commonly referred to as Digital Governance). Its first edition (2007, Macau) marked the beginning of a journey that has led ICEGOV and its participants to 14 different cities spread over 13 countries and 6 continents.

Nowadays, the conference is maintained and coordinated by the United Nations University Operating Unit on Policy-Driven Electronic Governance (UNU-EGOV), headquartered in the city of Guimarães, Portugal. A policy-oriented think tank dedicated to Digital Governance and part of the larger United Nations University, the Operating Unit has cemented its role as an international reference of excellence within the UN system and its Member States. It brings together multidisciplinary and multicultural teams around complex problems and emerging challenges, focusing on sustainable development, social inclusion, and active citizenship.

Our goals: a global, multi-stakeholder conference

Over the past 16 years, ICEGOV has become a significant and structured source of rich research, policy insight, and networking, reaching global audiences of more than 6900 participants from at least 96 countries. A truly global conference, ICEGOV brings to each host country a state-of-the-art programme and exhibits a strong UN character by heavily contributing towards the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals, which includes a sustained approach to gender balance and equal opportunities for people from developing countries through the UNU-EGOV Scholarships Programme.

The conference promotes knowledge sharing through the presentation and publication of academic papers, keynote lectures, plenaries, workshops, networking events, and other sessions. It is a platform where people from all spheres of the community work together towards advancing public policy and development, and strengthen international cooperation. Additionally, ICEGOV links the worlds of research and policy by promoting the interaction and cooperation between universities, research centres, governments, industry, international organisations, and the United Nations system.

Figures and publications

On average, each conference edition attracts 300 participants from both developed and developing countries, with the 2017 edition in New Delhi setting a record-high attendance of over 1750 people. While ICEGOV attracts mostly participants from academia (60%), due to being an academic conference at heart, it is also attended by people from government and industry (25%) and international organisations, including the United Nations system (15%).

A total of 16 proceedings volumes have been published by the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) as a direct result of paper submissions to the conference. These volumes comprise 1464 papers covering a vast majority of topics, regions, and people of the world, and represent over 7500 pages of research written by over 2097 different authors originating from 96 countries. Additionally, the conference has published a Special Collection of e-Government Innovations in India (2017, ACM, 22 papers), four special issues of Government Information Quarterly with selected best papers (2010, 2011, 2013, 2014; Elsevier), and further 9 other publications, including reports and briefs.

The papers are indexed by Scopus, Web of Science, and DBLP – Computer Science Bibliography, among others. The current acceptance rate is 34%, while the average number of papers submitted is 183.

Past editions

  • 2023 – Belo Horizonte, Brazil
  • 2022 – Guimarães, Portugal
  • 2021 – Athens, Greece
  • 2020 – Online [N2]
  • 2019 – Melbourne, Australia
  • 2018 – Galway, Ireland
  • 2017 – New Delhi, India
  • 2016 – Montevideo, Uruguay
  • 2015 – Tunis, Tunisia [N1]
  • 2014 – Guimarães, Portugal
  • 2013 – Seoul, Republic of Korea
  • 2012 – Albany, USA
  • 2011 – Tallinn, Estonia
  • 2010 – Beijing, China
  • 2009 – Bogotá, Colombia
  • 2008 – Cairo, Egypt
  • 2007 – Macau, China

N1: The 2015 edition was not held due to security concerns related to the Bardo National Museum attack and the Sousse mass shooting (both in 2015).
N2: The 2020 edition was held entirely online, in real-time over four days, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.