Abstracts: July 4th, 2002

Mary BowermanThe White Paper ‘Modern Local Government: In Touch with the People’ suggested the Business Excellence Model as a way for local authorities to demonstrate Best Value in service delivery. The author uses the concept of isomorphism, developed within institutional theory, to explain the progress of the Model in local government. She draws out some important lessons: first, central government needs to be beware of its ability to create coercive isomorphic forces, which can lead to unintended consequences. Second, local authorities should embark on new initiatives only if they are convinced of a practical benefit to the organization. Alternatively, where conferment of legitimacy is the desired result, they should wait until the bandwagon is well and truly rolling towards a named destination before they join it.

Public Money and Management 2002 volume 22. ISSN 0954-0962

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