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Strategic superboards: improved network management processes for regeneration?

Carole Johnson (Nottingham Policy Centre, School of Sociology and Social Policy, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, UK)

International Journal of Public Sector Management

ISSN: 0951-3558

Article publication date: 1 March 2005




Aims to present a critical discussion of two UK case studies through which a “third way” modernisation of regeneration policies has been identified as a world‐wide trend.


Provides case studies that represent attempts at creating “strategic superboards”: the first, local strategic partnerships (LSPs) is a national programme and the second, the regeneration zones (RZs), is peculiar to a specific region in the UK. Network management theory is used to analyse how regeneration partnerships, as networked organisations, are managed. The focus is on the institutional design rules used to achieve decentralisation, balance and joining‐up.


Although the findings show that the programmes' institutional design was potentially improved, the partnerships' achievements fell short of their objectives. It is concluded that a key factor in this failure is the continuing partial approach by central government in managing the networks. As a result these partnerships found it difficult to operate within the new institutional designs.


Highlights that there has been an absence of attention to management in network situations by UK academics that is not shared by our UK and European counterparts.



Johnson, C. (2005), "Strategic superboards: improved network management processes for regeneration?", International Journal of Public Sector Management, Vol. 18 No. 2, pp. 139-150.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2005, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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