Yelyzaveta Kukovska

Title: Transforming Governance: the Evolution of Diia App in Ukraine and the Role of International Collaboration

Supervisor: Dr. Egert Juuse

Opponent: Steven Nõmmik

Defense: 21 August 2023


Abstract: This MA thesis presents a comprehensive analysis of the implementation and impact of Diia, the citizen app and the only state web portal of electronic services in Ukraine. Diia has only been available to the public for around 4 years, making it a relatively new addition to the landscape of digital governance in Ukraine and a new important area for academic research. The author recognizes the importance of combining various research methods and theoretical frameworks, as well as engaging with international indexes, in order to gain a comprehensive understanding of complex phenomena and the potential to facilitate social, economic, and political development. Throughout this study, an exploration of Diia's evolution and its impact on Ukraine's and the world’s digital governance landscapes has been undertaken. The analysis delved into the factors that influenced the creation and development of Diia, shedding light on its growth trajectory and the role of Ukraine's robust IT sector, innovative image, and prior success in digital solutions across sectors. This research also shows the dynamic collaboration between international teams, exemplified by discussions and cooperation between the Ukrainian Diia team and counterparts from countries such as Estonia. In addition to contributing to the understanding of Diia's evolution and impact, this thesis initiates direct engagement between academic researcher and development teams of citizen apps in different countries by live interviewing Ukrainian Diia and Estonian mRiik teams. Moreover, in order to analyse research questions, a survey among Ukrainian users was conducted alongside extensive complementary desk research.


Keywords: Diia app, electronic identity, state portal, public services, adoption stages, citizen engagement, government digitalization, user perception, technology adoption, international collaboration, policy diffusion