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Political Organization and Multi Level Governance

How to assess administrative reform?

The article "How to assess administrative reform? Investigating the adoption and preliminary impacts of the Norwegian welfare administration reform", where Anne Lise Fimreite and Per Lægreid are co-writers, is published in the Journal of Public Administration.

The other writers are Tom Christensen with the University of Oslo and Jostein Askim who is senior manager at PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Abstract:

This article addresses how to assess public-sector reforms using a reform in the Norwegian welfare administration as a case study. This reform represents a complex hybrid organizational form and a challenging combination of political control and local autonomy. We examine first how the reform has addressed its three main goals. These were to get people off welfare and back into work, to bring about more service-orientation, and to increase efficiency. We also address the side-effects of the reform by describing operational effects, process effects and system effects. Second, we examine how effects can be understood from an instrumental, cultural, and environmental perspective. A main finding is that context is significant for effects, and that it has so far proven difficult to discern clear overall effects concerning the main goals of the reforms and their side-effects.

Read the article