In the United Kingdom under the New Labour government from 1997 to 2010, there was a shift of power away from local towards central government, leading to a situation in which the role of public service organisations could appear to be mainly implementing priorities set by central government and complying with national standards, enforced through the setting of targets and the use of performance management frameworks. The key performance management systems, and the standards within them, became increasingly focused on outcomes, defined as the results that services produce that have an impact on the lives of service users and citizens – the benefits of the service rather than the volume or quality of the outputs (Willis & Bovaird, 2011).
Bovaird, T. and Davies, R. (2011), "Chapter 7 Outcome-Based Service Commissioning and Delivery: Does it make a Difference?", Groeneveld, S. and Van De Walle, S. (Ed.) New Steering Concepts in Public Management (Research in Public Policy Analysis and Management, Vol. 21), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 93-114. https://doi.org/10.1108/S0732-1317(2011)0000021011
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