The purpose of this paper is twofold: to analyse the diffusion of an innovative policy or service and the factors influencing it through an explorative study of the diffusion of the Bookstart program in Taiwan; and second, to provide an analytical framework for further study of this program.
The study is both empirical and theoretical. It uses data from existing studies and also agencies involved in Bookstart to explain the diffusion of the program. It then draws on theories of policy diffusion and the initial findings of this study to develop an analytical framework for the further study of the diffusion of the Bookstart program.
The Bookstart program, which is designed to promote reading habits for children 0 to 3 years old and to strengthen parent‐children relations, was originally initiated in the UK. It was first introduced into Taiwan in Taichung County in 2003. The paper shows how the program spread throughout Taiwan and indicates the role of the key players in the diffusion, including charitable institutions, local politicians and leaders, local authority agencies, and the Ministry of Education. The paper posits an analytical framework identifying factors which may help to promote or facilitate the diffusion. In this respect, the paper draws on the theoretical literature and also initial evidence from the research so far undertaken. This will guide the research in the next stage of the study.
This explorative study provides an example of the nature, process and direction of the diffusion of a policy or service innovation, and suggests the possible factors promoting or facilitating it, as identified in the initial findings of the research and in the relevant theoretical literature.
Tung‐Wen Sun, M., Shih, M., Hsu, K. and Chen, J. (2013), "Service innovation and policy diffusion: an exploratory study of the Bookstart program in Taiwan", International Journal of Public Sector Management, Vol. 26 No. 5, pp. 361-374. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJPSM-05-2013-0067Download as .RIS
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