Edited by Edoardo Ongaro, Andrew Massey, Marc Holzer and Ellen Wayenberg
Chapter 13: Introduction. Performance Measurement and Accountability in IGR-MLG Settings
Marc Holzer and Ellen Wayenberg This part explores accountability relationships tied to perceived and actual performance in intergovernmental and multi-level government settings. The relationships are complex, confusing and ‘messy,’ but the increasingly interdependent nature of public sector service delivery mandates a substantial research agenda that will clarify causal relationships. The four contributions in this part set that agenda. Hall’s contribution in expanding our understanding of performance measurement and accountability across levels of government addresses the situations of counties in the state of Kentucky and the federal government of the United States. He starts by depicting how shared and diffuse accountability in joint federal-local projects contributes to masking the systematic effects of these projects, with the absence of needed measures. Looking at fiscal transfers through the lenses of recipients (that is, local governments), Hall witnesses variations across the relative contributions of counties and federal agencies. Hypothesizing that counties with increased financial and administrative capacities can afford to be more selective about the restrictiveness of federal grants, the findings are rather inconclusive in this regard, with the exception of the overall capacity reducing the match relative to local ‘own source’ revenues. Localities’ characteristics also matter. For future research on financial performance in intergovernmental transfer, Hall not only offers helpful suggestions for future research, but also two indices for grant burden. Bouckaert and Halligan turn the reader’s attention to an overlooked fact in performance measurement in intergovernmental settings: performance measurement can be better understood on three different dimensions: systematic/unsystematic, management of performance/lack...
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