Handbook on the Politics of Small States
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Handbook on the Politics of Small States

Edited by Godfrey Baldacchino and Anders Wivel

Comprehensive and timely, this Handbook identifies the key characteristics, challenges and opportunities involved in the politics of small states across the globe today. Acknowledging the historical legacies behind these states, the chapters unpack the costs and benefits of different political models for small states.
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Chapter 4: Small states: public management and policy-making

Külli Sarapuu and Tiina Randma-Liiv


Small states have to live with a number of ‘governance paradoxes’ that derive specifically from their size and lead to unavoidable trade-offs in choosing appropriate response measures. This chapter seeks to unpack the constraints and opportunities that result from a relatively small population size, and including the small size of the public administration. It offers a rare but systematic overview of the core characteristics of small state public administrations, the limitations and opportunities that accompany them, and their impact on small state governance. The discussion focuses on the five core components of public administration systems that have been at the centre of public management reforms in the last decades: budgetary systems, personnel systems, public sector organization, performance measurement, and openness and transparency.

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