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Government organizations’ innovative use of the Internet: The case of the Twitter activity of South Korea’s Ministry for Food, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries


Noting the government’s role in diffusing information across various sectors of society, this study analyzes the Twitter activity of the Ministry for Food, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MFAFF), one of Korea’s government organizations. From a broad perspective, this study provides a better understanding of innovation activity mediated by social media—particularly the government’s Twitter activity, a topic that has not been addressed by previous webometric research on Triple Helix relationships—by employing social network analysis and content analysis. The results indicate some limitations of the MFAFF’s activity on Twitter as a mutual communication channel, although Twitter has the potential to facilitate risk management. Further, based on the MFAFF’s confined use of its Twitter account, the results suggest that its Twitter account can be an effective information distribution channel, indicating Twitter’s value as a communication tool for innovation activity through social media. This study provides an empirical analysis of the government’s Twitter activity and contributes to the literature by providing an in-depth understanding of the Triple Helix relationship on the Web.

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This work was supported by the 2011 Yeungnam University Research Grant and the National Research Foundation of Korea grant funded the Korean Government (NRF-2011-327-H000005). Further, the authors acknowledge the use of some tools developed by the WCU Webometrics Institute. Finally, the authors are grateful to Ji-Young Park for her assistance in collecting data and preparing this paper.

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Correspondence to Han Woo Park.

Additional information

Some of the Twitter analyses in this article were based on a chapter (Cho et al. 2011) in a Korean book.

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Cho, S.E., Park, H.W. Government organizations’ innovative use of the Internet: The case of the Twitter activity of South Korea’s Ministry for Food, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries. Scientometrics 90, 9–23 (2012).

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  • Government
  • Innovative
  • Policy promotion
  • Semantic network analysis
  • Twitter