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Centralized Customer Service: What Local Government Characteristics Influence its Acceptance and Usage of Information?

PAM, Vol. 14 No. 2, (2009)

Despite their occurrence in local governments, customer service centers have seldom been mentioned in public administration literature. As a result, this article identified a model of contributing factors based on earlier research, and it tested it on cities and municipalities in the U.S. After examining local demographic factors, cities and areas with large populations, forms of government, and location, the findings indicate that several variables are important predictors. First, cities and municipalities with higher revenue capacity are more likely to have centralized customer service centers. Second, cities are more likely to have adopted this system when compared to non-cities. Third, highly populated cities and counties are more likely to have this system. Last, southern localities are more likely to adopt centralized customer service centers as well as those with high percentages of minorities. However, local government forms did not predict the adoption of centralized customer service centers.

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