Trajectories, Institutions and Stakeholders in Public Management Reform

  • David Farnham
  • Annie Hondeghem
  • Sylvia Horton

Abstract

Not all countries have embarked upon root-and-branch reforms of their political and administrative systems, despite some convergence among them, although the environmental forces and trends facing them are similar. The aim of this chapter is to explore the reasons for this, arguing that the actions of governments are path dependent and context specific. Superficial similarities and a common rhetoric often conceal very different actions and responses to common problems (Pollitt 2002). So despite a great deal of mimetic isomorphism, there is a lot of variance ‘in how political systems have interpreted the ideas and responded to the demands or opportunities for introducing administrative change’ (Peters 1997: 227). In line with a neo-institutionalist approach, this chapter stresses the impact of institutions as well as the role of actors in public management reforms. Institutions have a shaping, facilitating or constraining effect on reforms, which are the result of actions taken by individuals or groups and their responses to the pressures acting upon them.

Keywords

Europe Income Defend Stake OECD 

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Copyright information

© David Farnham, Annie Hondeghem and Sylvia Horton 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • David Farnham
    • 1
    • 2
  • Annie Hondeghem
    • 3
  • Sylvia Horton
    • 4
  1. 1.University of PortsmouthEngland
  2. 2.Universities of Greenwich and East LondonEngland
  3. 3.Public Management InstituteCatholic University of LeuvenLeuvenBelgium
  4. 4.School of Social, Historical and Literary StudiesUniversity of PortsmouthEngland

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