Hearing but not listening: the local government review process
Public Administration, 75, (1), . (doi:10.1111/1467-9299.00045).
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This article presents a study of the local government review process in West Sussex. As in any local government reorganization the career and status concerns of individuals and broader positions of coalitions dominant in different organizations provide the dynamic to a ‘play of power’ which is in turn conditioned by external events and contextual factors. Underlying the analysis is a concern to assess whether in particular the presence of an independent commission facilitated the application of an element of policy analysis and learning into the process. It is concluded that little in the way of a reflective and deliberative process occurred. Equally it is noted that to achieve such qualities in public decision-making is a challenging and daunting task when major organizational interests are at stake.
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