Special issue blog series on strategic management of the transition to public sector co-creation
Christopher Ansell and Jacob Torfing
In our recent article in our special issue on Strategic management of the transition to public sector co-creation, we reminisce briefly about the time when bureaucracy with its hierarchical command structure and emphasis on compliance with written rules was the only game in town. This was understandable, since the public sector was tasked with solving simple problems through large-scale provision of services such as schooling, health care and social welfare. This task called for exploitation of the bureaucratic forms of organisation propagated by industrialisation.
Then, from the 1970s onwards, the criticisms of the public sector for being inefficient and delivering poor services and failing governance solutions started to grow and the public sector was confronted with the question whether to ‘make or buy’. As a result, we saw the expansion of quasi-markets where public and private service providers competed for contracts and customers. This development turned citizens into demanding, dissatisfied and complaining consumers expecting service without having to contribute anything themselves towards problem solving. In the increasingly cash-strapped public sector, this development seems to be unsustainable. We need to mobilise the manifold resources of users, citizens and private stakeholders in order to provide needs-based services and create new and better solutions through mutual learning and innovation. Continue reading SPECIAL ISSUE BLOG SERIES: Blog 2 – Co-creation: the new kid on the block in public governance
Special issue blog series on strategic management of the transition to public sector co-creation
Jacob Torfing, Ewan Ferlie, Tina Jukić and Edoardo Ongaro
During the 1980s and early 1990s, we were consistently told that the public sector was ossified, incompetent and unimaginative, and squandered value produced by the hard-working and innovative private sector. Government was the problem, not the solution, and we should therefore have less state and more market. The neoliberal onslaught on the public sector had begun and public employees gradually developed an inferiority complex.
This nightmarish development was reversed by Mark Moore’s Creating Public Value (1995) who insisted that the public sector creates its own distinctive value. The public sector creates ‘public value’ defined as what has value for the public and public values. Public managers are not merely engaged in securing compliance with bureaucratic rules, but are entrepreneurs engaged in the exploration of new and better service and policy solutions. In this way, the public sector was redeemed and public managers could re-describe themselves as proud guardians of the public interest and producers of public value. Continue reading NEW SPECIAL ISSUE BLOG SERIES: Blog 1 – Public value as the game changer for co-creation of innovative solutions in the public sector
We are delighted to announce the 2021 prizes for award winning papers published in Policy & Politics in 2020.
The Bleddyn Davies Prize, which acknowledges scholarship of the very highest standard by an early career academic, is awarded to:
‘Applying design in public administration: a literature review to explore the state of the art‘ by Margot Hermus, Arwin van Buuren & Victor Bekkers from the special issue: ‘Improving public policy and administration: exploring the potential of design’.
The Ken Young Prize, which is awarded to the best article judged to represent excellence in the field published in Policy & Politics, is awarded to:
‘When design meets power: Design thinking, public sector innovation and the politics of policymaking’ by Jenny M Lewis, Michael McGann and Emma Blomkamp from the special issue: ‘Improving public policy and administration: exploring the potential of design’.
Brief critiques of the winning articles follow, in celebration of their contributions. Continue reading Policy & Politics announces the 2021 winners of the Early Career and Best Paper Prizes
Oscar Berglund, Claire Dunlop and Christopher M. Weible
In the study of ecological systems, there is a concept called metacommunities. The idea is that a species might be dispersed in different yet interconnected communities. These metacommunities might emerge and grow for reasons of fit, space, survival, or chance. These metacommunities interconnect through some species traversing between them either rarely or habitually. Over time metacommunities might also evolve and adapt to their particular niches. For those who care about supporting ecological systems that might be dispersed in interconnected niches, metacommunities provide a broad language and perspective to help visualize, understand, and govern.
As editors for Policy & Politics, we view this metaphor of metacommunities apt for describing the broadly defined field of public policy, which is dispersed in many communities, each with their own research approaches, lexicons, and traditions. We also see that some scholars navigate between communities more than others. In describing academia, we often refer to these metacommunities as silos where some silos are more isolated or connected than others as well as some silos existing within other silos. Similar to metacommunities, silos might emerge and grow as scholars search for space to develop their ideas, self-sort with others of similar orientations, and more. Continue reading Policy & Politics: Serving and Enhancing our Metacommunities
Journal Manager, Policy & Politics
This quarter’s highlights collection brings to you a selection of articles from our incredibly popular special issue on Policymaking as designing: the added value of design thinking for public administration and public policy.
Published earlier this year, this special issue brings together a collection of papers that have taken design of public policy and administration seriously, in a variety of different and practical ways. The papers demonstrate that not only are there many examples of design approaches being implemented, but that there is much to learn about how we make the best use of these to improve public policy and administration and the design of public services. Continue reading Design special issue highlights collection – free to access from 31 July 2020 – 31 October 2020
Thank you to all our reviewers in 2019
On behalf of the authors and readers of Policy & Politics, the Co-Editors wish to wholeheartedly thank those who reviewed manuscripts for us in 2019.
With a high 2 year impact factor of 2.028, and a 50 year tradition of publishing high quality research that connects macro level politics with micro level policy issues, the journal could not exist without your investment of time and effort, lending your expertise to ensure that the papers published in this journal meet the standards that the research community expects for it. We sincerely appreciate the time spent reading and commenting on manuscripts, and we are very grateful for your willingness and readiness to serve in this role.
We look forward to a 2020 of exciting advances in the field and to our part in communicating those advances to our community and to the broader public.
Policy & Politics Co-Editors: Sarah Ayres, Steve Martin & Felicity Matthews
If you enjoyed this blog post, you may also be interested to read:
Narratives as tools for influencing policy change [Open Access]
Three habits of successful policy entrepreneurs [Open Access]
Can experience be evidence? Craft knowledge and evidence-based policing [Free]
Representatives from the Policy & Politics journal team are delighted to be attending the 4th International Conference on Public Policy #ICPP4 at Concordia University, Montreal. We are looking forward to celebrating with our authors, reviewers and board members over our recent impact factor rise to 2.028 which has taken us into the top 20 of all international journals in public administration and the top 50 for political science.
You can read the top cited articles contributing to our impact factor of 2.028 for FREE until 31 July!
Please look out for our representatives around the conference to discuss any relevant articles you are planning to publish. They are: Continue reading Policy & Politics at the International Conference on Public Policy #ICPP4, Montreal
Sarah Ayres, Steve Martin, Felicity Matthews – Policy & Politics Editors
We are delighted to announce that Policy & Politics has achieved a fantastic result in this year’s Journal Citation Reports with its highest ever Impact Factor of 2.028. The journal is now in the top 20 of the Public Administration category and the top 50 for Political Science.
This impressive outcome is testimony to the outstanding quality of research produced by our authors, the meticulous scrutiny of our peer reviewers, and the hard work of the Policy & Politics and Policy Press team. We would like to offer our thanks and congratulations to all.
To celebrate this increase, we have made the most highly cited articles which contributed to the 2018 Impact Factor free to read until 31 July 2019: Continue reading 2018 Impact Factor announcement: Read our most highly cited articles
By Christina Boswell and Eugenia Rodrigues
It has long been observed that policies can get lost in implementation. The best intended legislation or programme adopted by central government can get reinterpreted, distorted or even subverted when applied at local level, or across different areas of government. This was certainly the case with the British Labour government’s system of targets rolled out in the 2000s. Number 10 and the Treasury (the ‘core executive’) adopted a series of quantified performance targets designed to improve public services. And the government even monitored how far they were being achieved through rigorous reporting arrangements. But the targets were appropriated and applied in quite different ways across departments. What factors shaped how different parts of government implemented targets? Continue reading The challenges of implementing targets in UK government – a ‘multiple streams’ approach