Review - (2019) Volume 7, Issue 1

The Role of Union Digital Centre to Ensure People's Participation at Sylhet Sadar, Bangladesh
Biback Das*
Department of Public Administration, Sylhet, Bangladesh
*Correspondence: Biback Das, Department of Public Administration, Sylhet, Bangladesh, Tel: + 8801647090970, Email:

Received: 26-Feb-2019 Published: 20-Mar-2019


E- Governance is increasing for smooth governmental services. Rural people are deprived to get information’s lack of proper materials. So, Bangladesh Government have taken an initiatives about to reach information’s all over the country since 2010. An UDC has two entrepreneurs whose are recruited by local representatives with a little requirement. In rural areas, people have little knowledge of ICT tools. For this reason, they can get information which is related to them by reaching on UDC. We want to know ensuring the participation on UDC at sylhet sadar. We selected this area because there have environment in rural areas. People are come there for issuing their birth registration and various programs. This study can help us to identify about the scenario of UDC. UDC can render their services by using effective internet tools. This study carries the perceptions of beneficiaries as well as entrepreneurs.


E-service; E-governance; Good governance; Public service delivery; People’s participation; Entrepreneurs; UDC


We are living in an information-based society where information and knowledge are the source of resources. Some commonly used words or phrases to describe an information-based society are a reducing of distance and time‘ and improved productivity and diversity,‘ with the common element being change. Bangladesh is a south Asian country with a numerous problems that deeply effects on the socio-economic conditions on this country. Recent times, Bangladesh government takes an initiative to digitalize the systems all over the systems and tries to make it a self-reliance country. For ensuring the development, Bangladesh government tries it from the lower level like Union Parishad. Without effective participation of local rural people, any country can‘t reach its desired goals. So with the local government, Bangladesh governments have to take many initiatives for improving its development. So, Local government is an integral part of the overall governance process of any country. Like the central government the local government institutions at different levels perform many of the similar functions. The scale and scope of these activities are however, limited. As local government institutions are nearer to the community these can ensure participation of them in the planning and implementation of development programs and projects [1]. For enhancing the local development, and fulfilling the recent Sheikh Hasina‘s mandate is DIGITAL BANGLADESH using ICT on providing services in local level and government introducing E-government. They make ensuring to provide services through ICT for enriching local participation. Government of Bangladesh declared a vision that of including its manifesto of National Election of 2008 Digital Bangladesh by the year 2021 to provide government services at the door of the common people. The concept of Digital Bangladesh aims to secure such system which enables public services to reach the people getting information easily instead of the people going to seek services smoothly. As part of this vision, the government has been established Union Information and Service Centre (UISC) in different remote areas of Rural Bangladesh. Now Bangladesh has launched Union Information and Service Center (UISC) in all 4,551 unions across the country to disseminate information and deliver government services to all citizens (The Union Parishads were based information centers, equipped with computers and wireless Internet, will offer various online services to people at nominal charge [2]. Governance is more than the latest buzz word. What it means exactly, however, has not been so well inaugurated. Governance is an extremely elusive objective. It means different things to different organizations, not to mention to different actors within these organizations (to make matters even more confusing, governance experts also routinely focus on other types of governance global governance, corporate governance, participatory governance and so on — which may be related only peripherally to the good governance agenda vis-à-vis domestic politics and administration. In general sense, governance is a decision-making process that gets more people and stakeholders involved. The aim is to come up with common good decisions that satisfy the majority [3]. By facilitating the flow of information and knowledge between rural and more developed communities of a developing country ICT enhanced egovernance service can notably shore up rural development process [4]. Development can only be effective if rural citizens have access to the information for their day-to-day activities. In recent years, e-governance project in rural areas plays an important role to access to the relevant information and transformation of local government services. It improves the efficiency of government information, reduces cost, increases transparency, and ensures quality of service. For improving and ensuring people‘s participation of rural people and engaging them as participant to take many information through UISC. UISC is lowest level ICT based service provider. Almost 4551 unions has one UISC center for providing ICT based service for enhancing service capacity ensuring participation on rural areas. Information is ultimate resource for the development of a person, institute, society, and country as a whole. Nowadays people recognize information as power and the most important element for empowering people of any group. To generate useful information, it requires effective information systems that can be easily accessible by the people. Information and Communication Technology (ICT) greatly facilitates capturing, processing, storing and smooth flow of information and knowledge offering the socially disadvantaged community exceptional opportunities to achieve their own entitlement [5]. This paper identifies how works UISC center for providing services to disseminate information and deliver government services through ICT and other thing which they can‘t get easily or do manually. This paper also examines the satisfaction of rural people‘s on adapting with these recent tools. Particularly the term e-participation will be used to refer to citizen participation regarding Internet in general. By this paper evaluating the how reducing the gap between citizen and government. This paper intends to investigate the gap that exists between expectations and reality in citizen participation and identify issues that require attention in the gap.

Statement of the Problem

The provision of information and service delivery in Bangladesh is mostly concentrated in administrative units like the Upazila (sub-district) and the District levels. On the other hand the service recipients mostly live in distant rural areas that need to travel to these places and meet public officials to receive official information and services such as copies of public records, welfare benefits and availing themselves of livelihood services and knowledge of market prices. Visits involve substantial time and costs such as travel, food, bribes and loss of an income for time spent away from work. Alongside incurring these costs they also face the realities of public offices such as the absence of providers, harassment in case of not paying bribes and low responsiveness. For these they are sometimes required to pay additional visits and costs. Inefficient public officials are also prone to providing incorrect information, tampering or concealing records for personal gains, and other corrupt behavior. For poor people the amount of the bribe and other costs are disproportionate to their income and this often becomes unbearable. Similarly, the traditional providers of government channels points are not transparent about their decisions, hardly disclosing the actual price, the time required and the basis for decision. Thus, service recipients, unaware of their legal rights, succumb to the monetary desires of the provider. It is difficult to ascertain whether or not the introduction of the Right to Information Act 2009 and the Citizen Charter in public offices under the Secretariat Instructions 2008 has changed these circumstances [6-8]. The problems become more complicated due to the prevalent use of manual delivery systems in public offices, which usually takes more time. Records kept physically in a haphazard way are not easy to find quickly when required. Because of structural and societal barriers, and people‘s positions being weakened by issues such as poverty, illiteracy and gender imparity, a large portion of the population is marginalised in terms of receiving information [8,9].

Often, citizens have severely limited access to traditional communication channels such as newspapers, radio, television and internet. A recent study shows that 25% of the country‘s population are completely in Information darkness‘, meaning that they have barely any access to communication mediums [10]. This situation is worse for rural areas where 36% of rural people have no access along with their socio-economic fragility, this situation makes them more vulnerable and often means they cannot access necessary information and services from government offices [3]. Having no other recourse, rural people often utilize touts or intermediaries and peons for getting access to the public offices and receiving services. Traditional intermediaries are people who mediate between government employees and the recipients (for applying for, paying and receiving the information or services). These intermediaries are known to exploit their clients heavily [7,8].

The aforementioned human-related problems indicate that ICT could play a pivotal role in improving access to information/ services. However, the government‘s attempts to present them electronically from conventional points are only in the early phases. Not only are the government information and services far away for rural people, but also some private office services are still distant due to their inadequate development in the vicinity of rural areas. Sometimes, to photocopy a document or to type an application, rural people have to travel a long distance, usually to the nearest sub-district (Upazila) centre or semi-urban locations, and spend a large amount of time and money [8]. Moreover, people cannot access the few available online information and services because of the digital divide. They lack both the ICT hardware and the understanding to use them [11].

The current situation suggests that most of the government departments at the Upazila and district levels are still running their businesses manually with semi-skilled/unskilled personnel without being connected to the UDC [12]. Challenge also looms large from a lack of relevant e-content. At present, though some of the information are put on different government websites, online services are very rare [7,8,13]. Moreover, online contents are limited to basics of organisations and to some downloadable forms. This unpreparedness of implementing agencies is consistent with the lack of a comprehensive policy on UDC to facilitate any difference. Thus, it is relevant to ask how effective the UDC can be without relevant contents and policy back up [14]. Despite availability of shared access points, poor rural people often remain averse to ICT which has little meaning to their daily struggle of life [15].

Furthermore, the lack of awareness among disadvantaged sections of the population may pose a formidable challenge. Worldwide, women are generally reluctant to adopt new technology [11]. As the UDC‘s clients are often mostly poor, illiterate women, it is worthwhile to examine how the model works for them in reducing their economic burden and bridging the digital divide. The dilemma between financial viability and pro-poor service delivery dictates a need to pay detailed attention to whether the UDC can create any advantages for rural people. In 2014, nearly one quarter of centres were shut down because of drop outs of entrepreneurs. Almost half of all UDCs are without female entrepreneurs and they were regularly present in only approximately 5% of centres. UDCs that are not vibrant in operations experience fewer visits by people frustrating its entrepreneurial and social objectives [16,17].

Despite such apparent strengths and weaknesses of the project there have been few studies to ascertain attributes of its impacts, management and sustainability. Given the potential challenges emanating from management practices, it is imperative to understand what strategies the UDC adopts to ensure sustainability in terms of financial targets, social outcomes and entrepreneurship development.

Rationale Of The Study

Bangladesh is a third world developing country with huge population. Most of the people are uneducated, poor and lives in rural area. They are deprive of getting government services and information properly and in due time. Present government, with the financial help of UNDP, has already set up 1Union Digital Centre (UDC) in 4509 unions, the lowest tier of Local Government system in Bangladesh so that grassroots people can be benefited. This research is done to investigate how Union Digital Centre (UDC) minimize gap between govt. and citizen/promotes e-governance in the rural area in Bangladesh by providing e-service. Furthermore, considering the issue from development perspective it has been find out the functions of UDC are to promote e-governance framework for rural people. Moreover, by revealing the findings obtained through the present study, government will be generally acknowledged to be aware of the services in rural areas. In this case, Union Digital Centre(UDC) plays a great role for the rural people by providing various e-services at a lower cost. UDC is a place where all sorts of off- line, on-line government & commercial services are available for the grassroots people. It is based on ICT. The usage of ICT will broaden the operational scope of modern public administration and the reliability of its actions as foundations to achieving progress, development, and good governance. Successful implementation of UDC can play a vital role to implement e-government in Bangladesh. The present democratically-elected government, powered in January 2009, has expressed its firm commitment to transform the context less nature of public administration to a citizen friendly, accountable, and transparent government by implementing the key election pledge known as Vision 2021. Through traditional system, all kinds of governmental services are provided manually and it is very costly as well as time consuming. As a result, most of our rural people did not get proper services in time and they remain out of government service facilities. So implementing UDC can ensure better citizen services by rendering cost effective smooth services.

Objectives of the Study

The major objective of the study is to know the present situation of UDC service in local area in Sylhet district.

• To describe and evaluate the role of UDC as a focal point of service delivery in rural areas and its impacts on intended beneficiaries.

• To know the effectiveness of the UDC in public e-service delivery.

• To minimize the gap between government and citizens by improving delivery of government services &information to the rural people.

Significance Of The Study

A number of factors have made ICT led e-government an important national agenda in Bangladesh, particularly in rural areas. Firstly, against the backdrops of socio-economic problems the introduction of shared access points is considered as a leapfrogging strategy that will ensure the targeted development while escaping costly investment. Secondly, while major public sector reform initiatives in Bangladesh have, thus far, failed to reach the doorsteps of people with an efficient service delivery system, the government sees onestop services from the UDC as a transformational initiative to ensure easy access and better governance of delivery. Thirdly, as a quick win strategy, the UDC is expected to transform the UP into a vibrant, knowledge-based institution by triggering demands for e-services that will push electronic transformation in the upper echelons of government to supply them [7,18].

This paper can help to the contribution to academic knowledge in the field. Exploration of the problem through empirical research and in-depth analysis of relevant policy and literature can lead to better understanding that can benefit researchers, academics, consultants, policy practitioners and readers. This study aims to introduce a new understanding of the problem and build up the conceptual framework and theoretical underpinnings that can serve as useful resources for further incremental work, action-plans or academic research. It is important to know what the UDC can provide and whether it can offer the necessary information because the concept is aligned with developmental goals. Though there are some studies on similar projects in a few other developing countries, the concept of UDC differs from them because of its breadth and involvement of multiple partners. It involves a massive number of people with formidable socio-economic backwardness. This study focuses on the financial sustainability of the UDC by identifying the factors involved in the interplay of partners. Correctly ascertaining the factors behind it will have implications for preventing failures and closure of centers. Finally, understanding the partnership inputs in the UDC and the interrelationship among them can illuminate pathways of how they contribute to the survival and growth of the system. Given the lack of empirical studies to provide any model to explain what factors contribute to the sustainability of the project. The model development will render a clearer message to its relevant stakeholders and help with implementing the intended mission.

Literature Review

Particularly in developing countries, participation greatly depends on the activities and attitude of the local elected representatives and government officials who are working in local government institutions [19,20]. The basic philosophy of participation is to give locals a meaningful role in local government decisions that affect them. Gaventa argued that a first key challenge for the 21st century is the construction of new relationships between ordinary people and the institutions especially those of government which affect their lives‘ (Gaventa). They have further argued that people‘s participation is effective when people‘s empowerment reaches a position that resulting in enhanced influence over decision-making, monitoring and evaluation processes [9] identified six concepts of inclusive governance. According to them, when designing procedures that represent the goals of inclusive governance one needs to answer the question of whom and what should be included and by which means and procedural rules a final product is reached. These questions cannot be answered without referring to the concepts or even philosophies of participation and collective decision making. One can differentiate between six distinct prototypes of structuring processes that channel public input into public policy-making. These prototypes can be termed as functionalist, neo-liberal, deliberative, anthropological, emancipatory and post-modern. Functionalism conceptualizes society as a complex structure, recognizing essential functions for social survival either from an individual actor‘s perspective or from society‘s point of view. Each social action is assumed to be functional in assisting society‘s survival. Social differentiation produces structures that specialize on the fulfillment of specific functions. In this sense, participatory exercises are necessary in order to meet complex functions of society that need input (knowledge and values) from different constituencies.

Neo-liberal approach to citizen participation draws on the philosophical heritage of liberalism and Scottish moral philosophy [9]. Neo-liberalism conceptualizes social interaction as an exchange of resources. In this concept, deliberation is framed as a process of finding one or more decision option(s) that optimizes the payoffs to each participating stakeholder. Neo-liberal decision-making consequently focuses on individual interests and preferences. Deliberative citizen participation is mainly influenced by Habermasian discourse theory [21]. Discourse theory and discourse ethics advocate more inclusiveness for legitimate and sustainable political decision-making. In discourse ethics, only those political and judicial decisions may claim to be legitimate that may find the consent of all affected parties in discursive opinion formation and decision-making processes. Anthropological citizen participation is mainly influenced by pragmatic Anglo-Saxon philosophy. It is based on the belief that common sense is the best judge for reconciling competing knowledge and value claims. Pragmatism postulates that ideas are to be judged against their consequences in the social world. For participatory decision-making, this approach has far-reaching consequences. The moral value of policy options can be judged according to their consequences. The basic ideas of emancipatory participation are derived from a Marxist or neo- Marxist social perspective [9]. The goal of inclusion is to ensure that the less privileged groups of society are given the opportunity to have their voices heard and that participation provides the means to empower them to become more politically active. The main emphasis in the emancipator school is the empowerment of the oppressed classes to, acknowledge their objective situation, and then become aware of their own resources to change the negative situation in which they live, develop additional skills and means to fight these unjust structures. The Post-modern approach to citizen participation is based on Michel Foucault‘s theory of discourse analysis. Discourse analysis rests on the three basic concepts of knowledge, power and ethics. Foucault is interested in the constitution of knowledge. He assumes that knowledge formation is a result of social interaction and cultural settings. Truth then depends upon historically and socially contingent conditions [22]. The project utilizing ICT tools to increase socio-economic development by the year 2021, consists of four pillars: (i) developing human resources for the 21st century, (ii) connecting citizens in ways that is most meaningful, (iii) taking services to citizen‘s doorsteps, and (iv) making the private sector and market more productive and competitive through the use of ICTs (Access to Information Programme 2009). Considering the ultimate capacity of ICTs, the vision 2021 proposes to mainstream this as a pro poor tool to eradicate poverty, establish good governance, ensure social equity through quality education, healthcare and law enforcement for all, and to prepare the people for adaptation with climate change (Access to Information Programme 2009). This is illustrated with three examples described below, involving the creation or evaluation of websites [23]. A participatory design process enables users to contribute their expertise and knowledge, provides an opportunity for learning and skill sharing that benefits both designers and users, and encourages acceptance and uptake of new systems by giving users a sense of ownership and a good understanding of the system (Mumford). The material technology cannot be understood in isolation from the way it is appropriated in social processes. Further, he suggests that the framework serves to bring to the forefront technologically-enabled social practices rather than the technology itself or the actions of human actors and thus avoids technological or social determinism. It highlights the importance of the interplay of the context, social structures, and agency factors in the technologically enabled social practices” (Parvez). Governmentled citizen engagement exercises are proliferating in many countries in diverse areas of planning and policymaking, at both local and national levels. Furthermore, significant effort is being directed at engaging citizens in hard to reach categories such as disabled people, ethnic minority groups, young people, etc. However, while many of these initiatives are indeed harnessing and exploiting the capabilities of ICT for communication between government and citizens, an extensive review of the literature - revealed only a small number of publications describing active citizen engagement in the development, shaping or selection of those technologies. In most cases where citizens have been involved in some aspect of technology development or evaluation in relation to e-government, the engagement has had a very specific and limited focus, such as the creation or evaluation of websites (Figure 1).


Figure 1: Conceptual framework.

Research Methodology

In this research, descriptive and explanatory research has been used to achieve the objectives of the study. Descriptive research has been used because the main objective of the study is to explain real scenario of the service providing Union Digital Centers in Sylhet Sadar Upazila according to UDC‘s beneficiaries. Explanatory research is used because the study is explained the cause and effect relationship variable. This paper follows quantitative research approach has been used. Quantitative approach has been selected for empirical investigation via statistical or mathematical techniques which is used for well understanding the perception of the aged people perceptions on modern health the barriers and the data has been collected can be statistically represents. This study has been collected data from informants and has presented the real situation of Union Digital Center. In this paper, there have two types of data have been collected from both primary and secondary sources. Primary data has been collected from the residents of khadimpara union parishad, Tuker bazar union parishad and Tultikor union parishad. We collected data is 35 from these three union parishads about Union Digital Center (UDC). Among these 35 respondents, there are 14, 11 and 10 respectively. And 6 respondents are UDC‘s officials whose are called entrepreneurs selected from local people. A secondary source of data has been used to enrich this study. Secondary data has been collected from published e-books, journals, articles, reports of different organization which are related to the study. Data has been collected through the survey method. Because it is quantitative and mostly primary in character as well as helpful in getting more reliable and well organized information on particular problem. The study area has been covered with three union parishads those are Khadim para Union parishad, Tultikor Union parishad and Tuker bazar union parishad‘s UDCs. We are collecting data by using the method of focus group discussion (FGD) and direct structured interview with structured questionnaire.

Our respondents are 41 among them 35 respondents are UDC‘s beneficiaries and 6 of them are UDC‘s entrepreneurs. Here have a look of our collecting respondents (Tables 1 and 2).

Respondents UDC‘s beneficiaries UDC‘s officials
Tuker bazar UP 10 2
Tultikor UP 11 2
Khadimpara UP 14 2
  35 6

Table 1: Collecting respondents and different UDC’s values.

          Union Digital Centre UDC value
Total number of union digital centre 4551
Total number of entrepreneurs 9102
Citizens visit to UDC per month 3.20 million
Total birth registration 3, 40, 00,000
Mobile banking services available 3700 UDC
Life insurance offered 2770 UDC
Telemedicine services offered 35,000 Citizens
Computer literacy training provided 45,000 Students
Health services provided 75 million citizens
Health services provided 1.45 Million

Table 2: UDC at a glance.

Services To Be Provided By Udc

All of them are inaugurated simultaneously on 11th November, 2010 by Hon‘ble Prime Minister of Bangladesh and UNDP‘s administrator & former Prime Minister of New Zealand Ms Helen Clark in order to translate the dream of Digital Bangladesh‘ into reality. Through the application of ICT, we can easily access to any information smoothly and quickly with a lowest cost. 12 The following services and information can be provided through UDC such as:

• Birth Registration

• Health Information

• Agricultural Information

• Market Information

• Information about law enforcing agencies

• Information about admission test in all levels (school, university etc.)

• Information related to public examinations

• Weather forecasting /Natural disaster information

• Social safety network-VGD, VGF, Kabikha, Kabita etc. information

• Land related information- registration, mutation, record, survey etc.

• Family planning Information

• Mobile Banking service

• Employment & Job Information

• Voter ID card & election related various information

• Information related to all sorts of development activities taken in local & central level

• Computer compose, printing, scanning & laminating

• Photographic service

• Photocopier service

• Internet Browsing & E-mail Service – connectivity with information super high way

• Video conferencing

• Mobile Telephone Service

• Tax related information- income tax, VAT, excise duty etc.

• Business & recreation information

• Various types of government forms download

• All other information related to government Services [5].

Data Analysis And Interpretation

We collected data from two groups those are beneficiaries of UDC and entrepreneurs of UDC. We are taking interviews of them and depicts of their views in Table 3.


Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
Valid 18 2 5.7 5.7 5.7
20 1 2.9 2.9 8.6
21 2 5.7 5.7 14.3
22 1 2.9 2.9 17.1
23 1 2.9 2.9 20.0
25 5 14.3 14.3 34.3
27 1 2.9 2.9 37.1
28 2 5.7 5.7 42.9
30 2 5.7 5.7 48.6
32 1 2.9 2.9 51.4
33 1 2.9 2.9 54.3
35 2 5.7 5.7 60.0
36 2 5.7 5.7 65.7
39 1 2.9 2.9 68.6
42 1 2.9 2.9 71.4
45 2 5.7 5.7 77.1
48 4 11.4 11.4 88.6
51 1 2.9 2.9 91.4
57 1 2.9 2.9 94.3
62 1 2.9 2.9 97.1
74 1 2.9 2.9 100.0
Total 35 100.0 100.0 --

Table 3: Union Digital Center (UDC) beneficiaries.

Table 3 portrays that we collected data from 35 respondents with three different union parishads under sylhet sada upazila. Collecting data from various age ranges where age range (20 to 50 years old) is significant. Almost 80% of respondents are these age range.

Table 4 illustrates among respondents (35 people) where 54.3% respondents are male respondents and rests of 45.7% respondents are female. In Union parishads, attendances of both sexes are significant.

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
Male 19 54.3 54.3 54.3
Female 16 45.7 45.7 100.0
Total 35 100.0 100.0 --

Table 4: Different respondents and their values.

Table 5 identifies income ranges are varied with their occupation. According to Table 5 male respondent’s income are greater than their counterpart female. Most of them are unemployed those are actually whether housewife or student. Almost 48.6% respondents are them whether they are housewife or student has not any income source.

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
0 17 48.6 48.6 48.6
5000 1 2.9 2.9 51.4
7500 1 2.9 2.9 54.3
10000 5 14.3 14.3 68.6
12000 2 5.7 5.7 74.3
15000 4 11.4 11.4 85.7
  18000 1 2.9 2.9 88.6
  18500 1 2.9 2.9 91.4
  20000 3 8.6 8.6 100.0
  Total 35 100.0 100.0 --

Table 5: Income ranges with their occupation.

Table 6 refers respondents are aware about Union Digital Center (UDC). Most of respondents (37.1%) are known about the services of Union Digital Center (UDC) from their elected representatives of their locality. On the other part, respondents are conscious about the services of UDC from people whose are taking various services from UDC that is significant. Among respondents, Advertisement and UDC‘s entrepreneurs have meaningful 17.1% and 14.3% respectively.

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
People 11 31.4 31.4 31.4
Advertisement 6 17.1 17.1 48.6
Public Representatives 5 14.3 14.3 62.9
13 37.1 37.1 100.0
Total 35 100.0 100.0 --

Table 6: How to know about Union Digital Center.

Table 7 portrays 45.7% of respondents are satisfied while they are taking services from UDC‘s. But significant member have opinions satisfaction somehow break down including procrastination of entrepreneurs while they are taking services.

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
Not sufficient at all 3 8.6 8.6 8.6
Less sufficient 6 17.1 17.1 25.7
Somehow sufficient 10 28.6 28.6 54.3
Sufficient 16 45.7 45.7 100.0
Total 35 100.0 100.0 --

Table 7: Level of satisfaction.

Table 8 describes the accessibility of poor people in taking services from UDC have somehow (54.3%) satisfied. UDC‘s entrepreneurs are treated people on the basis of their social, economic and politically. Among them 28.6% of respondents are talked about the accessibility of poor people in UDC is satisfied not any discriminations while taking services.

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
Not sufficient at all 2 5.7 5.7 5.7
Less sufficient 4 11.4 11.4 17.1
Somehow sufficient 19 54.3 54.3 71.4
Sufficient 10 28.6 28.6 100.0
Total 35 100.0 100.0 --

Table 8: Level of accessibility to the poor.

Table 9 answered a question about meet demand while they are provided e-services. Most of respondents (45.7%) are satisfied while they are taking services from UDC. Entrepreneurs would meet the demand. On the contrary, some of respondents like 25.7%, 22.9% respectively, are somehow satisfied and less satisfied about providing services when they couldn‘t meet the demand

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
Not sufficient at all 2 5.7 5.7 5.7
Less sufficient 8 22.9 22.9 28.6
Somehow sufficient 9 25.7 25.7 54.3
Sufficient 16 45.7 45.7 100.0
Total 35 100.0 100.0 --

Table 9: E-Services delivery performances meet the demand.

Table 10 defines the qualifications of entrepreneurs. 40% of respondents are rated them sufficient while 34.3% of respondents are rated them somehow sufficient. The qualifications of entrepreneurs are varied person to person.

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
Less sufficient 6 17.1 17.1 17.1
Somehow sufficient 12 34.3 34.3 51.4
Sufficient 14 40.0 40.0 91.4
Very sufficient 3 8.6 8.6 100.0
Total 35 100.0 100.0 --

Table 10: Qualifications of entrepreneurs.

Table 11 briefs fees that remuneration is taken from public are somehow sufficient for them. 40% of respondents are told that this is sometimes unbearable and rate of taking fees are sometimes high. And 37.1% of respondents are satisfied with these fees.

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
Not sufficient at all 3 8.6 8.6 8.6
Less sufficient 5 14.3 14.3 22.9
Somehow sufficient 14 40.0 40.0 62.9
Sufficient 13 37.1 37.1 100.0
Total 35 100.0 100.0 --

Table 11: Fees that are taken from citizens.

Table 12 describes that entrepreneurs are doing their duty with enthusiastically that are agreed with 77.1% of respondents.

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
Less sufficient 6 17.1 17.1 17.1
Somehow sufficient 2 5.7 5.7 22.9
Sufficient 27 77.1 77.1 100.0
Total 35 100.0 100.0 --

Table 12: Level of doing job with enthusiastically.

Table 13 briefs that regularity of entrepreneurs is both somehow sufficient and sufficient that can be called significant. Due to some reasons they may be absent but always they are active and present at UDC.

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
Not sufficient at all 1 2.9 2.9 2.9
Somehow sufficient 17 48.6 48.6 51.4
Sufficient 17 48.6 48.6 100.0
Total 35 100.0 100.0 --

Table 13: Regularity of entrepreneurs.

Table 14 examines us that promoting UDC‘s services to the people, entrepreneurs have great role to reach them. 60% of respondents are told us to disseminate UDC‘s service to the poor by advertising through entrepreneurs.

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
Not sufficient at all 3 8.6 8.6 8.6
Less sufficient 7 20.0 20.0 28.6
Somehow sufficient 4 11.4 11.4 40.0
Sufficient 21 60.0 60.0 100.0
Total 35 100.0 100.0 --

Table 14: Entrepreneurs initiative to promote UDC.

Table 15 describes people perceptions about the role of UDC is satisfied. 68.6% of respondents are briefed to us.

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
Less sufficient 7 20.0 20.0 20.0
Somehow sufficient 4 11.4 11.4 31.4
Sufficient 24 68.6 68.6 100.0
Total 35 100.0 100.0 --

Table 15: People’s perception towards effectiveness of UDC.

In Table 16, 45.7% of respondents agreed that meet the demand by the people by providing governmental services, UDC playing a role to minimize the gap between taking services from the UDC.

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
Not sufficient at all 5 14.3 14.3 14.3
Less sufficient 6 17.1 17.1 31.4
Somehow sufficient 8 22.9 22.9 54.3
Sufficient 16 45.7 45.7 100.0
Total 35 100.0 100.0 --

Table 16: Level of gap for service delivery.

In Table 17, its clearly depicted that UDC can meet the demand of desired eServices delivery to the poor. 48.6% and 40% of respondents told us about this.

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
Less sufficient 4 11.4 11.4 11.4
Somehow sufficient 14 40.0 40.0 51.4
Sufficient 17 48.6 48.6 100.0
Total 35 100.0 100.0 --

Table 17: Level of desired eservice delivery.

Table 18 depicts the income of entrepreneurs of UDC. They earned from uDC is not significant. They take just service charge from UDC. Their income is not as same as every month. Their salary is not fixed.

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
5000.00 1 16.7 16.7 16.7
6000.00 1 16.7 16.7 33.3
10000.00 2 33.3 33.3 66.7
12000.00 1 16.7 16.7 83.3
15000.00 1 16.7 16.7 100.0
Total 6 100.0 100.0 --

Table 18: Union Digital Center (UDC) officials.

Table 19 portrays UDC, there are same number of man and woman entrepreneurs. Every UDC‘s has one male entrepreneur and one female entrepreneur.

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
Male 3 50.0 50.0 50.0
Female 3 50.0 50.0 100.0
Total 6 100.0 100.0 --

Table 19: Entrepreneur of male and female.

Table 20 We have talked with entrepreneurs. There requirements have minimum HSC pass and selecting from local people who have know-how about ICT and Computer literacy.

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
AGRI(DIPLOMA) 1 16.7 16.7 16.7
HSC 3 50.0 50.0 66.7
MASTERS 1 16.7 16.7 83.3
MBA 1 16.7 16.7 100.0
Total 6 100.0 100.0 --

Table 20: Education of people.

Table 21 When we interviewed with them, they claimed that they are satisfied with their job. This is a part time job of them. They very much enjoy this.

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
Yes 4 66.7 66.7 66.7
No 2 33.3 33.3 100.0
Total 6 100.0 100.0 --

Table 21: Satisfied with current situation.

In Table 22, taking services from UDC, customer spent some of money which is sometimes enough to them. 66.7% of UDC‘s officials told us.

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
Yes 4 66.7 66.7 66.7
No 2 33.3 33.3 100.0
Total 6 100.0 100.0 --

Table 22: Spent by customer is enough.

Table 23 Every officials are agree to augment technical support on their place.

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
Yes 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0

Table 23: Need technical support.

In Table 24 defines that equipment are sometimes are not sufficient on UDC.

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
Somehow sufficient 5 83.3 83.3 83.3
Sufficient 1 16.7 16.7 100.0
Total 6 100.0 100.0 --

Table 24: Sufficient equipment.

Table 25 identifies us to awareness about UDC by people is significantly sufficient by interviewing UDC officials. People try to do their things cope with the time. They prefer digitally accomplished rather than analogue.

Valid   Frequency Percent Valid percent Cumulative percent
Less sufficient 2 33.3 33.3 33.3
Sufficient 4 66.7 66.7 100.0
Total 6 100.0 100.0 --

Table 25:  People’s awareness about UDC.


This study illustrates the present situation of Union Digital Center (UDC) for disseminating the services of government through electronically. Using ICT tools for providing services is becoming popular and accessible to the people/citizen. Basically UDC plays an important role for delivering services among citizens at their locality. Amongst our respondents, they come to UDC, especially registering birth certificate, death certificate, issuing passport application, knowing various admission/jobs results etc. Citizens are interestingly reached on their local UDC for taking services. The attendance in UDC is significant. Almost 10-12 people come to take services over the day. Most of our respondents are come in UDC twice or thrice times in a year if any need. By interviewing citizen in these three Ups, they gave us many interesting information that are important to us. Interviewing many beneficiaries of UDC, they gave some of information about entrepreneurs and about the services of UDC. Beneficiaries are somehow satisfied while they were taking services from UDC. Little respondents are gave us complaint about the entrepreneurs of UDC that they are given their services varied to class system. If any influential people come to UDC, they as soon as possible try to solve their problem or meet their demands. Somehow entrepreneurs are not skilled due to their lack of proper training. But at most times, respondents are satisfied about UDC. Entrepreneurs do their jobs enthusiastically as per asking to respondents. Entrepreneurs are most of time regular at their work place that is highly significant.

The dissemination of the services of UDC are greatly depended on the entrepreneurs. As per respondents, they told us that 60% of them are known the services of UDC by entrepreneurs this is mostly important. People‘s perception about the effectiveness of UDC is most significant. Almost 60% of respondents are agreed with this. Even their regularity at UDC is as much as good. People are also satisfied about meeting their demands. But sometimes they are worried about their right hampered by many obstacles like political affiliated people, influential person etc. according to UDC beneficiaries, this is sufficient to take their services but somehow it couldn‘t run smoothly due to many reasons.

If beneficiaries are somehow satisfied with the services of UDC, on the contrary, entrepreneurs are thought that there has lack of equipment those could be provided better services. We questioned entrepreneurs about their satisfaction of doing these types of job. They replied instant they are somehow satisfied but many times they can‘t assure about their job because this is greatly depended on the service charges when citizens are given them fees as usual by taking services on the contrary.

As per the question about their salary system, they replied, this is depended on the service fees that is too law. In a whole month, they can earn a less little of 10 thousand taka. We asked another question about their available equipment, they replied that this is not for sufficient because this is backdated to work. They haven‘t enough printer, computer, scanner, fastest internet server and most importantly all day electricity. They mentioned us to provide their best efforts to satisfy their consumers. About the question of building awareness for their rights of citizen, they do their job for building awareness about using ICT tools to get the things done.


ICT is the key issue for development and to run a modern government in any democratic polity. It has emerged as a single most effective strategic intervention to empower citizens and to deliver goods and services to the end stakeholders. UDC initiatives, by using ICTs, attempt to reduce cost, optimize efficiency and effectiveness, make governments more accountable and transparent, reduce the scope for corruption, and so forth. UDC essentially helps reduce the inherent gaps that occur in the process of manual operational procedure during the interactions between different stakeholders. Creation of national database and preserving that in a national web portal for interactive utilization by different stakeholders is instrumental in bridging the gaps in particular cases. Moreover, it will help to increase the capacity for both the government and the other stakeholders by enabling all in ICT sector.

In this study, it has been observed that beneficiaries have begun to realize the importance of UDC. UDC has opened a new window for the rural people in Bangladesh. Effective and efficient uses of ICT can bring the potential to make the rural communities in Bangladesh prosperous and empowered when crucial livelihood information like education, agriculture, health, land, law, etc. are available on time near doorsteps of all citizens. Even the common people who do not have much formal education let alone technical knowledge, have started to recognize the importance of adopting e-service(s) in case of un-interrupted, effective and efficient service delivery. Both the beneficiaries and officials of UDC have posed a great expectation for online service delivery. But some sorts of challenges are identified in developing e-service(s) that should be overcome very soon. In order to move towards a better future that ensures a competitive, socially responsible, vibrant, and dynamic UDC in Bangladesh, it needs to bridge the gap between the services promised and services offered. For this, it is necessary to have efficient collaboration of the e-service components i.e., the service provider, the channels of service delivery, and the service receiver.


Citation: Das B. The Role of Union Digital Centre to Ensure People's Participation at Sylhet Sadar. Review Pub Administration Manag. 2019; 7:262. doi: 10.24105/2315-7844.7.262

Copyright: © 2019 Das B. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.