Issues, Strategies and Challenges
Chapter 4: Internal Steering, Planning and Design Departments in Public Organizations: The Ultimate Test
INTRODUCTION This chapter marks a shift in the general organization of the book. Up to this point, we have examined the question of productivity, ﬁrst in a general way (irrespective of sector). We then investigated it in the context of market services and then of public services, with a special emphasis on the institutional dimensions (ﬁrm/organization) or sectors of activity. Our intention now is to penetrate the ‘black box’ of the organization, and in particular of government services. Thus this chapter, like the previous one, focuses on public and government services, but the emphasis now is on the intraorganizational dimension. It can be regarded as an extension to or supplementary section of Chapter 3. The intra-organizational level is of particular interest to decision-makers in ﬁrms and public bodies, particularly when they are seeking to compare performances with a view to allocating resources, for example. At this level of analysis as at the others, identiﬁcation of the output and of the relevant outcome poses certain diﬃculties. There is also the diﬃcult question of the links between the resources committed and outputs. The output in question here is an intermediate and not a ﬁnal output. Our starting proposition, which will be analysed in the course of this chapter, is that, as the productivity issue gradually spreads through the government services, it comes up against various diﬃculties, depending on the type of activity concerned. After all, some functions pose fewer diﬃculties than others when it comes to de...
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