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The purpose of this paper is to review the literature on public service failure and develop a research agenda for studying public service failure alongside private service…
The purpose of this paper is to review the literature on public service failure and develop a research agenda for studying public service failure alongside private service failure. The general services management literature has devoted relatively little attention to public services, whereas developments in the private service management literature have not reached public management.
This is a conceptual paper drawing on the public management literature. Different failure types and causes are discussed, including service failures that are specific to public sector settings. This is linked to the specific public context within which public services operate. Customer reactions to public service failure are then introduced, as well as service recovery.
Service failures in a public and a private context are different. There are different failure types and different standards of failure. Public management literature mainly studies collective and political reactions to service failure, whereas the private service management literature tends to focus on individual reactions. Finally, attention for service recovery was found to be very limited in the public services literature.
Studying public service failure is important because failure can have dramatic consequences for customers, public organisations, and society. Social inequalities that arise as a result of public service failure need to have a prominent role in future research.
This paper develops the concept of public service failure and sets a novel research agenda for studying processes, causes, and consequences of such failure, as well as public-private differences.
Multifaceted issues such as safety, social inclusion, poverty, mobility, rural development, city regeneration or labour market integration require integrated approaches in…
Multifaceted issues such as safety, social inclusion, poverty, mobility, rural development, city regeneration or labour market integration require integrated approaches in their steering. Governments are looking for instruments that can address the boundary-spanning nature of many social problems. In their quest to achieve valued social outcomes, they struggle with their new role, and the inadequacy of both market working and government-led central agency. After three decades of New Public Management (NPM)-style reforms, the strengths and weaknesses of this philosophy have become widely apparent. Fragmentation is a prominent observation in many evaluations of the NPM approach. The fragmentation of both policy and implementation lead to unsatisfactory public outcomes and a heightened experience of a loss of control on the part of policymakers. Achieving valued and sustainable outcomes requires collaboration between government departments, private actors, non-profit organisations, and citizens and requires tools that integrate the lessons of NPM with the new necessities of coordinated public governance. The public administration literature has in recent years been concerned with the ‘what's next?’ question, and many alternatives to NPM have been proposed.
We use data from the World Values Survey to describe and compare levels of confidence in the civil service in a series of countries, and study determinants of this…
We use data from the World Values Survey to describe and compare levels of confidence in the civil service in a series of countries, and study determinants of this confidence. Instead of focusing on citizen satisfaction with specific public services in a specific country, we analyze citizens’ general attitudes toward the public administration or civil service, and compare these attitudes internationally. We fit 60 identical regression models, to test for the impact of a series of socio-demographic and socio-economic variables in each of the countries. We finish by comparing the determinants in each of the countries, and test whether cultural or regional patterns emerge.
The purpose of this paper is to explore and explain public preferences for different public procurement practices. The paper looks into public support for…
The purpose of this paper is to explore and explain public preferences for different public procurement practices. The paper looks into public support for cost-effectiveness, discriminatory procurement in favour of domestic suppliers and sustainable procurement.
This study uses Eurobarometer public opinion data on 26.836 EU citizens from 27 EU countries.
This paper shows that EU citizens want public authorities to evaluate multiple aspects of any procurement offer in their public procurement decisions. It also found that, although cost-effectiveness and domestic favouritism are still important to EU citizens, citizens are most supportive of the objectives of sustainable procurement. Some associations between citizens’ procurement preferences and their social characteristics and political attitudes were found, but these only explain citizen procurement preferences to a limited extent. Country of residence has the strongest association with citizens’ acceptance of the objectives of sustainable procurement.
Even though the data contain information on the procurement preferences of a large number of EU citizens, it is a topic of inquiry that is sensitive to social desirability bias.
This paper contributes to the empirical understanding of public attitudes towards public procurement. It is one of few studies on citizen attitudes towards different public procurement practices.
The chapters in this book have all in some way focused on new steering instruments in the public sector, or on how governments, often in collaboration with other actors…
The chapters in this book have all in some way focused on new steering instruments in the public sector, or on how governments, often in collaboration with other actors, attempt to achieve integrated results and broad social outcomes. The trend away from the traditional and NPM-style prescriptions, the latter of which often resulted in a certain degree of fragmentation and a loss of steering capacity (Terry, 2005), is visible in a wide range of areas, both on the delivery level, and on the more strategic level. This has put the need to coordinate the public sector and to find new ways of steering firmly on the agenda (Braun, 2008; Bouckaert et al., 2010).
A number of studies and indicators have ranked European countries in terms of the performance of their public sectors. This paper aims to demonstrate that there are…
A number of studies and indicators have ranked European countries in terms of the performance of their public sectors. This paper aims to demonstrate that there are important conceptual problems with such rankings and comparisons.
Using the existing indicators, the paper first shows how European countries' public sectors are ranked. It then goes on to show how conceptual problems with these indicators may lead to incorrect conclusions.
Countries' public sector performance cannot be summarised using a single indicator because of inability to define “the public sector” and the disagreement on what it means for public sectors to perform.
Despite increasing demand and supply in policy circles for international public sector indicators, the existing ones are unreliable.
This paper extends the assessment of international public sector indicators beyond a mere technical evaluation.