Outsourcing of big data analytics due to a skill shortage in public administrations has affected policy learning at local level. Similar to the ICT developments in the 1990s that were accompanied by a New Public Management and evidence-based policy logic, the changes challenge government by creating a fragmented structure with limited feedback loops. This chapter points towards such developments in the UK, where especially local learning is restricted by siloed data analytics systems largely owned and operated by private organisations.
Maria Tullia Galanti and Sarah Giest
The role of individual or collective actors is often taken for granted and scarcely theorized in the literature on policy mechanisms. Nonetheless, if one considers the context and the processes that are involved in causal relationships, those actors often play a fundamental role in activating and making mechanisms work. This activation role can take different forms, and involve individual and collective actors at multiple levels of government – national, regional and local. This chapter focuses on the selection of entrepreneurial strategies in various policy contexts, affecting first-order mechanism down the line. The chapter uses examples at European level and the Italian national and local context to highlight the connection between policy context, entrepreneurial strategies and first order behavioural changes.