The Government Service Delivery Project: A Case Study of the Push and Pull of Central Government Coordination

Keast, Robyn L. & Brown, Kerry A. (2002) The Government Service Delivery Project: A Case Study of the Push and Pull of Central Government Coordination. Public Management Review, 4(4), pp. 439-459.

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Fragmentation and the lack of appropriately coordinated government services are widely considered to be costly problems impeding effective and efficient government service provision. Moreover, there is a growing realization that many modern social issues have developed into meta-problems that cannot be resolved by the traditional single agency approach. Coordination of services through more cooperative and collaborative networks of relationships between government agencies has become a preferred strategy for many public administrators. In this way, actors from a range of sectors form and reform into action networks to respond to existing and emergent issues. Managing these networks in order to achieve appropriate policy outcomes is an important aspect of modern day governance and strategy development. This issue is particularly important for the central agencies of state since they have a responsibility for ensuring consistent and cohesive government policy and service delivery. This paper gives an account of a public sector initiative aimed at enhancing service provision through the formation and management of inter-departmental networks of coordinative and cooperative action. It concludes that although networks are a useful mechanism of social coordination, their inherent benefits may be jeopardized when network management issues make them vulnerable to pressures from the centre.

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ID Code: 4827
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Networks, government, public management
DOI: 10.1080/14616670210163015
ISSN: 1471-9045
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > POLICY AND ADMINISTRATION (160500) > Public Policy (160510)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > QUT Business School
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2002 Taylor & Francis
Copyright Statement: First published in Public Management Review 4(4):pp. 439-459.
Deposited On: 22 Aug 2006 00:00
Last Modified: 05 Jan 2011 13:27

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