Towards collaborative development culture in local government organisations

Sanna Tuurnas (Public Governance Institute, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Leuven, Belgium) (Institute for Advanced Social Research, University of Tampere, Tampere, Finland)
Jari Stenvall (University of Tampere, Tampere, Finland)
Petri Juhani Virtanen (Department of Public Sector Leadership, Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra, Helsinki, Finland)
Elias Pekkola (Faculty of Management and Business, University of Tampere, Tampere, Finland)
Kaisa Kurkela (Faculty of Management and Business, University of Tampere, Tampere, Finland)

International Journal of Public Sector Management

ISSN: 0951-3558

Publication date: 12 March 2019

Abstract

Purpose

This paper approaches collaborative governance reform as an empirical phenomenon. The purpose of this paper is to gain insights about the systemic and grassroots level conditions for collaboration, observed from the viewpoint of organisational culture. In this paper, the authors ask what constitutes collaborative development culture in local government organisations?

Design/methodology/approach

The research design is founded on secondary use of quantitative data; a survey targeted to Finnish local government organisations (n=172). The authors analyse what factors the different groups, managers, professionals and politicians consider important for collaborative development culture and how they assess their local government organisations in this regard.

Findings

According to the results, enabling and supporting management, local government personnel’s input and ability to seek external partners are essential for creating a collaborative development culture. Interestingly, despite the recognition of deterring factors by the respondents the results highlight that the supporting and driving factors are more important for creation of collaborative culture, giving an optimistic message to actors trying to enhance collaborative development culture in local government organisations.

Originality/value

The authors examine the collaborative governance reform in a critical way, from the viewpoint of organisational culture. Through the study, it is possible to better understand the reality and readiness for collaboration of local governments in this respect. This is a valuable aspect for increasing both theoretical and practical understanding of the so-called collaborative governance.

Keywords

Citation

Tuurnas, S., Stenvall, J., Virtanen, P., Pekkola, E. and Kurkela, K. (2019), "Towards collaborative development culture in local government organisations", International Journal of Public Sector Management, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJPSM-05-2018-0119

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Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2019, Emerald Publishing Limited

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