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Public Administration Reforms in Europe

Public Administration Reforms in Europe

The View from the Top

Edited by Gerhard Hammerschmid, Steven Van de Walle, Rhys Andrews and Philippe Bezes

Based on a survey of more than 6700 top civil servants in 17 European countries, this book explores the impacts of New Public Management (NPM)-style reforms in Europe from a uniquely comparative perspective. It examines and analyses empirical findings regarding the dynamics, major trends and tools of administrative reforms, with special focus on the diversity of top executives’ perceptions about the effects of those reforms.

Chapter 23: Public administration reforms and outcomes across countries and policy areas

Katy Huxley, Rhys Andrews, Gerhard Hammerschmid and Steven Van de Walle

Subjects: business and management, public management, politics and public policy, european politics and policy, public administration and management, public policy

Abstract

This chapter explores public administration reform trends in Europe across 17 countries and 13 policy areas. The relationship between reforms, country and policy area were considered in relation to three public management paradigms (Public Administration (PA), New Public Management (NPM), and New Public Governance (NPG)), as well as four national administrative traditions (Napoleonic, Anglo-Saxon, Scandinavian and Organicist). The relationship between country, policy area and perceived public administration performance is also assessed. Country-based analysis indicated that transparency and open government, collaboration and a results focus were significant trends across Europe, reflecting the dispersion of NPG, whilst NPM reforms, such as privatization were less significant. Overall, the analysis presented in the chapter suggests convergence in reform trends, though Napoleonic countries were likely to rate reforms as less important and perceive performance to be lower. Variation by policy area was minimal.

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