Conclusions: Challenges to Policy Capacity

  • Martin Painter
  • Jon Pierre


The chapters in this volume have illustrated the complexity of understanding policy capacity, which is contingent on a number of factors, as discussed in Chapter 1. Policy capacity refers to the ability of a government to make intelligent policy choices and muster the resources needed to execute those choices. Policy capacity is directly related to administrative capacity and the overall capacity of the state — for example the capacity to win and maintain consent for policy decisions, and the capacity to sustain overall regime legitimacy. These dimensions of governing capacity are in turn connected to basic regime characteristics, such as the democratic nature of government.


Member State Administrative Reform Domestic Institution External Challenge Multilevel Governance 
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© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Martin Painter
  • Jon Pierre

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