Trajectories of Administrative Change in Italy, France, Greece, Portugal and Spain
Chapter 1: Introduction
THE REFORM OF PUBLIC MANAGEMENT IN NAPOLEONIC STATES: ISSUES AND RESEARCH QUESTIONS Since the 1980s, a wave of reforms of public management has swept across the world. A larger and larger, and fast-growing, literature in the field has addressed questions about the nature of such a phenomenon, the scope, the reasons for change, and the effects (Aucoin, 1990; Barzelay, 2001; Dunleavy and Hood, 1994; Ferlie et al., 1996, 2005; Hood, 1991, 1998; Kettl, 2000; Lynn, 1996; Olsen and Peters, 1996; Peters, 2001; Peters and Savoie, 1998; Pollitt, 1993; Pollitt and Bouckaert, 2004). However, the empirical bases for such studies appear to be unbalanced: whilst some countries1 have received great attention from academics, think tanks and practitioners alike (countries like Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom, where the New Public Management – NPM – originated, together with the USA and other Anglo-Saxon2 or North European countries, like the Netherlands or the Scandinavian countries, sometimes proposed as an alternative to the Anglo-American ‘managerial’ model3)’ the study of public management reform in other countries has apparently been relatively neglected.4 This book provides an account of the reforms of public management in five European (and EU member) countries: France, Greece, Italy, Portugal and Spain. The rationale of this book is to contribute to fill such a gap by providing a comparative study of the reforms in these five countries. The ambition is to revisit a number of topics of theoretical interest in the scientific debate in public management, including: the ways the national politico-administrative...