Complexity, Fragmentation, and Uncertainty: Government Capacity in an Evolving State by Felicity MatthewsComplexity, Fragmentation, and Uncertainty: Government Capacity in an Evolving State by Felicity Matthews

Complexity, Fragmentation, and Uncertainty: Government Capacity in an Evolving State

byFelicity Matthews

Hardcover | July 13, 2013

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In posing challenging questions about the relationship between state and society, theories of governance have promoted fierce debate regarding the capacity of government in an increasingly crowded policy terrain. Presenting for the first time the results of an extensive programme of originalresearch, this book analyses the ways in which national governments have responded to the raft of challenges to capacity associated with the governance debate. In doing so, it considers the impact of new policy challenges such as the earth's changing climate, and the increasing necessity of securingindividual behavioural change. To illuminate these issues, the book focuses on the Labour Government's attempts to steer the British state, offering the first in-depth analysis of the Public Service Agreement framework - a target-based delivery instrument, underpinned by the principles of centralised steering and accountability,cross-Whitehall collaboration, and operational autonomy - as a critical tool of strategic governance. As the story of Labour's approach to governing through the Public Service Agreement framework unfolds, a range of important themes emerge regarding the extent to which an increasingly crowdedpolicy arena has engendered complexity and fragmentation at all stages of the policy process; and in turn, the extent to which a recognition of such challenges permeated the political, cultural, and institutional norms of government. Yet, despite the picture of a hollow state painted in manyaccounts of governance, the book reveals how the unique resource advantages and democratic legitimacy afforded to central governments equip them with the potential to redefine their role and preserve their centrality.
Felicity Matthews is Lecturer in Governance and Public Policy within the Department of Politics at Sheffield University. She has previously been Lecturer in Public Policy at the University of York; held a Leverhulme Fellowship in the Department of Politics at the University of Sheffield; and was awarded an ESRC-funded Post-Doctoral Fel...
Title:Complexity, Fragmentation, and Uncertainty: Government Capacity in an Evolving StateFormat:HardcoverDimensions:296 pagesPublished:July 13, 2013Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199585997

ISBN - 13:9780199585991

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Table of Contents

PART I: CONCEPTUALISING GOVERNANCE1. Why Governance Matters2. The Evolving Capacity of the State and the Challenge of GovernancePART II: RESPONDING TO CHANGE3. Governing as (New) Labour4. Public Service Agreements5. Recycling6. Climate ChangePART III: THE PRESERVATION OF POWER?7. The PSA Framework and Strategic Governance8. Governance in the Twenty-First Century