COMMENTARY ON INTERNATIONAL MODELS OF
GOOD GOVERNMENT, PREPARED FOR THE NATIONAL
AUDIT OFFICE BY PRICEWATERHOUSECOOPER, SEPTEMBER 2008
This Report has been prepared by PricewaterhouseCoopers
LLP solely on the instructions of its Client, the National Audit
Office and with only the National Audit Office's interests in
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1.1.1 PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC) was
commissioned by the National Audit Office (NAO) in July 2008 to
develop a commentary on international models of good government.
The commentary is to support the NAO's submission to the Public
Administration Select Committee's enquiry into good government,
launched on 19 May 2008.
1.1.2 The commentary focuses on three aspects
of government: the definitions, structures and standards of good
government (explored in Chapter 3), policy making and delivery
(explored in Chapter 4) and performance monitoring and evaluation
(explored in Chapter 5). Our analysis also comments that these
aspects are interdependent.
1.1.3 Two focus countries, the United States
and France, were considered in detail. These countries were selected
both because they host different and distinctive political structures
and traditions but also because, as economically developed democracies,
they share a number of characteristics with the UK.
1.1.4 Views on good government, both within
the focus countries and elsewhere, were established through a
combination of desk based and in-country research. PwC researchers
interviewed experts, in person, at the Kennedy School of Government
based at Harvard University in the US and the Ecole Nationale
d'Administration (ENA) in Paris, France. The Kennedy School of
Government is a world renowned institution that brings together
academics, politicians and policy makers in order to support the
improvement of public policy and management. The ENA is also a
highly respected academic institution that trains French civil
servants and public administrators from around the world.
1.2 Definitions, models and structures of
1.2.1 Good government is government that
delivers. In the United States, France and the UK, government
success is measured by tangible differences on the ground. The
pressures of globalisation and increasing consumer choice make
delivery harder, and demand that government institutions are efficient,
responsive and tailored to individuals. Old top-down and statist
bureaucracies that cannot adapt to the citizen voice are not fit
for purpose. As a result governments around the world have become
more relaxed about the different models, sectors and organisations
used to deliver services; what works is what counts.
1.2.2 There is no one-size-fits-all model
of good government. Different policy areas in different countries
are subject to different implementation models. There are four
broad models of good government employed primarily in the economically
developed world. Modernised government seeks to reform rather
than out-source or privatise old bureaucracies, perhaps using
managerialist methods or devolving decision making to a more local
level. By contrast partnership government encourages private,
third sector and religious organisations to deliver government
services alongside or in place of state-run providers. Government
by market seeks to use the market to achieve public policy outcomes.
For example the European Union carbon trading scheme places an
economic price on pollution and therefore encourages environmental
conservation. Finally, privatisation is a model used when governments
pass all delivery responsibility to the private sector.
1.2.3 We note that, within the relatively
new trend of more state services being delivered by non-state
organisations, the role of government bureaucracies is still central.
In fact in some cases, particularly in times of crisis such as
the recent financial turmoil, the public demand that the state
play a bigger rather than smaller role.
1.3 Policy making and delivery
1.3.1 A country's institutional make-up
and political traditions shape policy making and delivery processes.
The checks and balances in the US system and the federalist structure
often lead to "grid-locked" central government. As a
result local innovation and policy competition between states
is incentivised. Also a comprehensive research base is necessary
to achieve consensus amongst constitutionally antagonistic branches
of government. As such the US has developed strong analytical
capacity both within government, through highly specialist civil
servants, and outside of government through swathes of think tanks
and academic institutions. Policy research and development outside
of government is supported by a strong culture of private philanthropy.
1.3.2 French traditions of social solidarity
and state action mean that reform efforts are mostly focused on
modernising, rather than privatising, government. Equity concerns
often outweigh those of financial efficiency. For example, experts
consider the French healthcare system one of the best in the world,
but also expensive. Furthermore, policy making is inextricably
linked to the legislative processes since France hosts a highly
regulated state. A more efficient legislature would lead to more
efficient policy making and delivery. Finally, the French experience
of controversial reforms being met with high levels of citizen
direct action highlights that good government relies on effective
public consultation. French academics agreed that the government
"gets it right" in France when it responds to the citizen
1.4 Performance monitoring and evaluation
1.4.1 Experts in the United States and France
highlighted UK performance monitoring and evaluation systems as
examples of best practice. Initiatives such as Public Service
Agreements, target setting and three-year budget cycles were seen
as effective means of tracking outcomes. Academics also thought
that there was an important and relentless focus on policy delivery
in the UK, underlined by the creation of the Prime Minister's
1.4.2 Reforms of performance monitoring
and evaluation in the US and France share some characteristics.
Both countries are now placing a greater emphasis on strategic
budgeting and performance indicators for government programmes.
The United States is promoting transparency and accountability
through innovations such as the Office of Management and Budget
scorecard for federal departments. The French government introduced
the wide-ranging and ongoing Révision Générale
des Politiques Publiques (RGPP) (General Review of Public Policies)
in 2007 to support efficient budgeting and performance monitoring.
1.5 Lessons learned for the UK
1.5.1 The UK can learn from instances when
the US and France get government right. The US system shows the
importance of innovation and social entrepreneurship through examples
such as the Learn and Earn high schools in North Carolina (see
4.1). US policy makers are also well supported by extensive analytical
capability, at a scale unmatched in the UK. In France, the effective
delivery of many government services points to a system that has
a high degree of public support and a general acceptance of a
comparatively high tax burden. This support underlines the importance
of public consultation and the fostering of social solidarity.
Furthermore, French health care is seen as one of the best systems
in the world, partly due to a choice based system that does not
sacrifice on equity. The careful balance struck in French healthcare
which allows private providers into the market but still maintains
universal coverage, might be a useful example as the National
Health Service seeks further reform.
1.5.2 Good government is changing. The old
ideological battles have been replaced by greater flexibility
and a more fleet-footed approach to constructing policy solutions.
Decision makers around are prioritising delivery over ownership
and structures. As such good government today may lack soaring
rhetoric and polarising debate, but it can at least equip policy
makers with the tools to bring about meaningful change and persuade
many of its citizens along the way.
2.1.1 The National Audit Office (NAO) commissioned
PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC) in July 2008 to develop a commentary
on international models of good government. The purpose of the
commentary was to support the NAO's submission to the Public Administration
Select Committee's (PASC) enquiry into good government launched
on 19 May 2008.
Two focus countries, the United States and France, were considered
in detail. These countries were chosen because they host considerably
different government structures and traditions and as economically
developed democracies provide useful comparisons to the United
2.1.2 PwC conducted both in country and
desk based research. The commentary draws on interviews with US
and French experts and academics from the John F Kennedy School
of Government and the Ecole Nationale d'Administration (ENA) respectively.
The John F Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University
is a world renowned institution that brings together academics,
politicians and policy makers in order to support the improvement
of public policy and management.
The ENA is also a highly respected institution that trains French
civil servants and public administrators from around the world
and supports government work with a strong academic base.
2.1.3 The purpose of the research was to
What models, definitions and structures
of good government are used in the United States and France (as
well as drawing from some other models from the rest of the world).
How different government structures
in those countries influence the delivery of good government.
The strengths and weaknesses of policy
making and delivery and performance management and evaluation
in the focus countries.
Lessons that can be learned about
good government for the UK.
2.1.4 This commentary takes the following
Chapter 3 discusses the different
definitions, characteristics and models of good government. The
government structures of the United States and France and the
influence of those structures on good government are also considered.
Chapter 4 analyses policy making
and delivery processes in the United States and France. The strengths
and weaknesses of the different approaches used are evaluated
and the views of academics are highlighted.
Chapter 5 considers performance monitoring
and evaluation in the two focus countries, and sets out a range
of academics' views on strengths and areas for development.
Chapter 6 highlights overall trends
of good government and sets out some examples of lessons learned
for the UK.
2.1.5 Since the commentary is aimed to support
the NAO submission to the PASC enquiry into good government, this
report has mapped the findings against some of the specific PASC
enquiry questions. An overview of this mapping is set out in Table
OVERVIEW OF THE STRUCTURE OF OUR FINDINGS
IN RELATION TO SOME OF THE PASC QUESTIONS
|3||Definitions, models and structures of good government.
||What does good government look like, and what are its necessary conditions?
Are relations between the centre of government, individual departments and frontline public sector workers organised so that each part of government can do its work effectively? Is there the right balance of powers, operational responsibilities and accountability structures?
|4||Policy making and delivery.
||Would changing the way in which policy or legislation is made increase the likelihood of successful policy delivery? How well does knowledge from policy implementation feed into policy or law making?
|5||Performance monitoring and evaluation.
||How adequate are existing mechanisms for judging government performance, such as departmental capability reviews and public service agreement targets?|
When weak performance in government is identified, are the right things being done to correct it? If not, what should be done about poor performance?
Do the right incentives exist for public sector workers to deliver policies effectively? For instance, what could complement (or replace) targets for policy and service delivery?
|6||Lessons learned for the UK.
||What can we learn about good government from instances where government gets it right?
2.1.6 In addition, Chapters 4 and 5 of this commentary
contain four case studies each from the focus countries. These
case studies are listed in Table B below:
|4.1||Policy making and delivery in the United States
||Case Study A: Welfare to Work in WisconsinPartnership|
Case Study B: Learn and Earn in North Carolina
|4.2||Policy making and delivery in France
||Case Study C: Anti-smoking legislation and campaigns -|
Case Study D: French HealthcarePartnership Government
|5.1||Performance monitoring and evaluation in the United States
||Case Study E: Programme Assessment Rating Tool (PART)|
Case Study F: Performance based budgeting in Michigan
|5.2||Performance monitoring and evaluation in France
||Case Study G: LOLF performance analysis tool|
Case Study H: RGPP "seven questions"
3. DEFINITIONS, MODELS
3.1.1 This section considers:
The context for good government.
General characteristics of good government.
Different models of good government.
3.2 Definitions, models and structures of good government
3.2.1 Good government improves the day-to-day lives of
its citizens. Strong institutional architecture, robust regulatory
frameworks and coherent bureaucracies are no longer sufficient
indicators of good government.
Good government is government that delivers.
3.2.2 There is less interest in the de jure criteria
of government (eg a free media, independent legislature etc.)
and more interest in the de facto outcomes of government.
Civil servants are questioned on hospital waiting times and school
attendance, not department structures or legislative processes.
Good government requires both effective policy development and
3.2.3 This commentary adopts the Public Administration
Select Committee's definition of good government:
How effective government is at making and implementing
policies, and seeing them delivered successfully; and
How well departments are able to oversee the continuing
operations of government.
3.2.4 Globalisation provides the context for the debate
about good government. The free movement of capital and the international
marketplace have set new challenges for governments as they try
to deliver effective outcomes:
The growth in consumer choice has led many citizens
to expect as much personalisation from the state as from their
local supermarkets. But traditional rules based bureaucracies,
which assert state monopolies, are not necessarily designed to
be flexible and nimble. Furthermore, the increase in size of the
private sector, in health and education for example, has led to
many citizens opting out of state services all together. This
has left governments, particularly centre-left ones, anxious about
the willingness of taxpayers to fund public services they don't
The economics of globalisation have encouraged
governments to pursue rigorously efficiency savings and balanced
budgets. But while efficiency is a relatively easy concept to
define in a commercial setting, governments have struggled to
define, measure and deliver efficiency for the public sector.
Several governments have discovered that a more efficient service,
in the strictly financial or commercial sense, may not bring about
the outcomes that the public want;
Governments' traditional levers are becoming progressively
less effective. For example the recent global "credit crunch"
has caused economic difficulties for the UK, particularly in the
housing market. But British politicians have little control over
global financial markets.
As a result governments can be seen as remote, out of touch and
General characteristics of good government
3.2.5 In response to the challenges of globalisation
and in the context of the need to deliver results, there are some
general characteristics of good government. These characteristics
are shared mainly, but not exclusively, by economically developed
countries with stable, established democracies (the focus of this
Good government is increasingly decentralised
and "closer" to its citizens. The United States has
an established tradition of devolved power through its federal
structure; local democracy even stretches as far as the election
of public servants including local school board members. Furthermore,
despite some perceptions of a centralised state in France, the
dense network of local, regional and national political institutions
has been able in recent years to respond to the EU's "subsidiarity
This principle demands that responsibilities are kept at a local
level unless it can be demonstrated that a higher level of government
can deliver services more efficiently. We note that French governments
since President de Gaulle have strengthened the power of regional
governments; in particular a 1982 law set up directly elected
regional councils with the power to elect their executives. The
law also devolved to these regional authorities (the 22 régions)
many functions hitherto belonging to the central government, in
particular economic and social development, regional planning,
education and cultural matters. In the UK Gordon Brown in a 2003
speech highlighted the need for devolution and transparency as
a non-market non-centralised form of government.
This idea has been further developed in the 2006 local government
White Paper which called for further devolution of powers.
In essence there is a trend of governments seeking to capture
and act upon citizen voice at a local level;
Good government is accountable and transparent.
In the United States, federal government departments are rated
four times a year on a traffic lights system. These results are
published on the internet and the focus for ratings is based on
the President's priorities.
The Government Accountability Office (GAO) also publishes and
submits to Congress lists of high risk federal programmes that
are not delivering as intended.
In France, citizens have the right to demand statements about
the reasons behind government decisions affecting them or their
businesses. They can also call on Le Médiateur de la République
(ombudsman) who has the power to propose reforms to ministers
on behalf of citizens.
The power of this office was strengthened in 2000 as Le Médiateur
gained the right to initiate reforms on his or her own initiative,
and to have permanent representatives around the country. In addition
recent public management reform efforts, such as the 2007 Révision
Générale des Politiques Publiques (General Review
of Public Policies), have sought to introduce more accountability
in the delivery of public services. In the UK, the National Audit
Office now undertakes a range of reviews of spending efficiency,
and assessments of performance measurement data systems. This
includes in sensitive areasfor example the annual reviews
of defence spending, the "Ministry of Defence Major Project
Also in the UK, the Prime Minister's Delivery Unit, combined with
the Cabinet Office, has focused on identifying relative performance
through information sharing, league tables and civil service capability
Good government employs management methods and
best practice from industry to drive performance and efficiency
in the public sector. There is a broad consensus amongst academics
and policy makers that command and control bureaucracies are not
fit for purpose in the modern age. Modernisation is needed to
ensure the state delivers value for money. As a result in the
UK for example, some elements of performance related pay have
been introduced into the civil service and this concept has been
extended to Australia, Denmark and the United States. In Canada's
Expenditure Management System, public managers have the flexibility
to fund new initiatives by re-allocating their existing budgets
and "portfolio budgeting" in Australia and the Nordic
countries gives managers discretion about how to meet mandated
savings targets. In France, progress has been made towards making
government information more accessible through "e-government"
initiatives with one-stop-shop websites and portals.
Furthermore a constitutional by-law in 2001, Loi Organique Relative
aux Lois de Finances (LOLF) made provision for the modernisation
of public management by setting performance indicators particularly
in relation to the budget.
Good government in practice
3.2.6 Most economically developed countries share the
broad tenets of good government laid out above. But the methods
used to implement government policy, and specifically the extent
to which market principles and the private sector have been introduced
to improve policy delivery, varies widely. Equally there are differences
about which parts of government should be taken out of public
ownership altogether. Table C below sets out four broad, generalised,
and by no means exhaustive models that governments employ to implement
models are used across and within states:
SUMMARY OF DIFFERENT MODELS OF GOVERNMENT
|Implementation of policy is mainly carried out by employees of the state and control and accountability are retained within central or local government departments;|
However in this model traditional bureaucratic government has undergone a process of reform. Performance measures may be used as a proxy for profit to drive up standards and managerialist methods are often employed.
|In general Nordic countries follow this model in many areas of public policy, although the use of out-sourcing and the introduction of competitive forces are increasing, particularly in the Swedish education system. Nevertheless decentralisation and devolution of power is the central focus of reform rather than choice and the introduction of quasi markets. Denmark in particular has low levels both of privatisation and the use of market type mechanisms. In the UK measures such as the introduction of Public Service Agreements and three year budget cycles demonstrate reform efforts aimed at making government more responsive and "customer" focused. In the United States the "re-invented government agenda", initiated by former Vice President Al Gore attempted to put in motion similar reforms. In France, this model has been used in relation to public financial management with initiatives such as the 2007 Révision Générale des Politiques Publiques aimed at driving efficiency and transparency in government.
||Governments often employ this model when considering policy issues that relate to national security. Contracting out certain aspects of national defence or intelligence gathering would cede an undesirable level of control. Equally other countries might use this model in areas where they want to maintain full authority or have particular equity concerns. For example in Finland, the education system is heavily controlled and there are strict rules restricting private schools and tuition charging. However modernisation is achieved through elements of decentralisation and a focus on efficiency. In the UK, this model was used to improve literacy and numeracy in primary schools between 1997 and 2001. Targets were set, outcomes were measured and government retained full control and accountability.
|Government policies are implemented by a number of providers from the private, public and third sector;|
Government, as commissioner of services, is responsible for overseeing and monitoring performance and ensuring contracts are aligned to policy priorities but is not responsible for policy implementation; and
|New Zealand pursued an aggressive policy of government reform in the late eighties and early nineties as they sought to open up markets in public service provision and put out to tender many government functions, including policy making in some areas. The 1988 State Sector Act and the 1989 Public Finance Act ensured that output based contracts became the cornerstone of reform.
||Governments often employ this model when they want to encourage innovation and flexibility. In the United States, the Wisconsin welfare-to-work programme which helped decrease the number of benefit claimants and increase employment in the state relied on different providers to deliver services (for more information see Case Study A in Chapter 4).
|Choice and competition are the orientating principles of public service delivery in this model.
||Furthermore, in recent years some of the government functions that were previously totally privatised are now carried out using this model. There has been the introduction of "circuit breaker teams" which are designed to bring together the front-line and central government departments and place a renewed focus on partnerships.,
||In the UK, the partnership model is also being proposed in relation to welfare reform as set out in a recent Green Paper. In France, the health system is run using partnership government, with a mix of state and private hospitals available to almost all citizens (For more information see Case Study D in Chapter 4.)
|Government by market|
|This model involves government using its power and influence to create a market that supports pubic policy aims; and|
This model often involves few if any public employees.
|The European Union's carbon trading scheme which seeks to limit carbon emissions by assigning an economic value to pollution is an example of the use of this model. Equally, the 1991 Bush administration's tradeable emissions plan for sulphur dioxide emissions mobilised the same principle.
||This model is used most commonly when governments seek to change the behaviour of a large group of citizens. Road pricing and congestion charging in the UK, although in their infancy, seek to use the market to achieve policy outcomes. Also, the issuing of individual budgets in adult social care is becoming more common. Equally the discharging of child care vouchers to individual families in certain American states is an example of creating a market for service provision.
|This model involves removing government altogether from certain areas of delivery.
||The UK in the eighties and nineties underwent a huge privatisation agenda, matched only by New Zealand. The UK state owned sector was reduced significantly in this period.
||This approach is most often used when government believes they don't have the capacity to deliver certain services or they feel the private sector is best placed to be effective.|
Telecommunications is a particular industry that governments have sought to privatise.
3.2.7 Despite the generic descriptions displayed in Table
C above, governments often employ different models within discrete
policy areas as well.
"21st Century government is a messy blend of old-fashioned
bureaucracy, partly and fully privatised, and markets."
Elaine Kamarck, Kennedy School of Government
3.2.8 In practice the complexity of the challenge and
the willingness of governments to prioritise delivery over structures
and ownership have led to a mixed economy of government models
used. For example, transport policy in the UK uses a number of
models: Driving licences are provided by a modernised bureaucracy
(the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency), contracts to run national
train lines are put out to tender (partnership government) and
the M6 road pricing scheme and the London congestion charge use
the market to reduce traffic. Equally the Swedish "free school"
model employs two good government models. Different education
providers from the private and third sector are allowed into the
market to offer choice and competition (partnership government)
and schools are allowed to close if demand is insufficient. However
education authorities still maintain control over certain aspects
of the system, including most of the curriculum (modernised government)
and modernisation is achieved through localised decision making.
Finally, child care policy in the US also uses more than one model:
there are a range of different providers who offer child care
(partnership government), but some states offer vouchers to individuals
to stimulate the market (government by market).
3.2.9 Figure A below illustrates the overlap that exists
when employing good government models in relation to the policy
areas discussed above and in Table C.
3.2.10 There is no "one size fits all" model
of good government and in many cases there is a trade-off. Full
democratic control, accountability and transparency are promoted
by rules based, bureaucratic and state centric solutions. But
efficiency savings are arguably better promoted by partnership
and market solutions. For example modernised government institutions
such as the National Health Service in the UK are constantly under
pressure to cut costs.
But the system guarantees universal coverage, and there are strong
accountability mechanisms, such as the Healthcare Commission,
that generate public scrutiny. More market and contract based
solutions, such as the outsourcing of many government functions
in the United States, may cut costs and increase efficiency, but
are open to the criticism that unelected and unaccountable private
companies are profiting from state investment.
Figure B below demonstrates an approximation of the intended (note,
not necessarily actual) effects of different government models
plotted against expenditure and accountability.
3.2.11 It is important to note that the models described
in this section are comparatively new. In her book Elaine Kamarck
describes most of the 20th century as the "bureaucratic century"
dominated by topdown, monopolistic government structures.
It wasn't until the 80s that the UK government began to introduce
the private sector into public provision and the trend more recently
has been for governments to move in the direction of partnership
and market approaches. This is linked to a practical view of good
government that prioritises delivery over structures and ownership.
3.2.12 However, it would be wrong to assume that government
has been totally out-sourced and hollowed out. In the recent "credit
crunch" in both the United States and the UK, the public
have demanded a bigger role for government in protecting savings
Equally, in 2001 Railtrack was taken back into public control
after disquiet at the perceived failure of the privatisation of
British Rail. So whilst there is a role for different models of
good government, in times of duress and when the public feel they
are not getting value for money, central bureaucracies, modernised
or otherwise, continue to have a role to play.
3.3 Government structures in France and the United States
3.3.1 The section below considers the following:
The different constitutional and institutional
arrangements in the United States and France; and
The impact of those different constitutional and
institutional arrangements on the delivery of good government.
3.3.2 The United States and France have different and
distinctive government structures. The US system is highly decentralised
with individual states having a great deal of autonomy over policy
development and implementation. The French system is mixed and
real efforts to decentralise power to a local level are combined
with a highly regulatory central state. Experts in both countries
highlighted advantages and disadvantages of each system in relation
to the delivery of good government. More detail about the constitutional
frameworks and institutional architectures of the two countries
and the UK are available at Annex C.
The United States"Ambition must be made to counteract
3.3.3 In the United States there is a well-versed view,
highlighted consistently during the interviews, that state institutions
are so well balanced that effective government is greatly restricted.
In fact, this was the stated intention of the founding fathers
who wanted to prevent tyranny and limit the power of any one institution.
The checks and balances between the judiciary, the legislature
and the executiveare such that they often create conditions for
policy paralysis rather than delivery.
"Where the environment has so many checks, the only way
you could get anything to happen was to reach a consensus that
would inevitably be `in the middle' and stop the country going
off in either of these two directions."
Steve Kelman, Kennedy School of Government
3.3.4 Figure C below highlights how the checks and balances
work in the United States federal government.
3.3.5 So to a certain extent the constitutional framework
is designed to make government more, not less, difficult. In this
context, "grid locked" government is a common phrase
often used to define the situation where the constitution has
worked against decisive policy making and delivery. The result
is that the rationale for government intervention has to be proved
beyond all doubt, rather than taken for granted.
3.3.6 Academic interviewees, however, agreed that the
institutional framework is critical in understanding how policy
decisions are made.
"Within the Executive branch the system of checks and
balances works like this; instead of two people sitting down and
coming to an agreement, they argue vociferously for their department
and then a third partythe presidentlistens and decides.
It is not a coincidence that phrases like joined up government
are more common in the UK."
Steve Kelman, Kennedy School of Government
3.3.7 There are three implications for good government
in relation to the US system:
Broad and deep policy research prior to legislation
is essential since there has to be a consensus before decisions
can be made. Even if the same parties reside in the executive
and the legislative branches of government, Congress and the presidency
are institutionally antagonistic, therefore the evidence base
has to be so convincing that it can overcome party and branch
Policy competition between states is promoted
by the federalist system of checks and balances. Since the ability
of the federal government to act is restricted, local policy development
and delivery is incentivised. As a result the states often become
testing grounds for policies that may eventually be rolled out
nationally. For example, the policing strategies trialled successfully
in New York in the late nineties now act as a template for other
states (and countries); and
Institutional antagonism leads to a culture of
vigilance rather than collaboration. Since the role of government
institutions is to guard against the power of other institutions,
they are prone to being risk averse. For example US academics
considered that the primary role of the Government Accountability
Office (GAO) was to censure government rather than support government
in achieving its goals.
France"La logique de l'honneur"
3.3.8 The French political system is complex, distinctive
and mixed, tending neither to the majority-based systems found
in Australia and the UK, nor the consensual systems that exist
in the Nordic countries and the Netherlands. Instead France hosts
a "semi-presidency", combining aspects of parliamentary
and presidential democracies where the relative powers of parliament,
the Prime Minister and the President are constantly under debate.
3.3.9 France has a highly rules-based, legalistic and
regulatory government framework. As a result policy making is
closely linked to the legislative processes. There is the Conseil
d'Etat which renders first judicial review over almost all legislation
proposed and the Conseil Constitutional which has the power to
block draft law if it doesn't comply with the constitution. In
addition, after laws are passed they should be followed by a Décret
d'Application which is driven by ministers in the relevant department
and allows for the necessary adjustments to the high volumes of
regulations. For policy making to lead to effective delivery,
there is a need to ensure that regulations are aligned to the
3.3.10 France has what academics described as a centralised/
decentralised system. Government power has been devolved to a
more local level in recent years, notably with the creation of
22 regions in 1982 as an extra layer of local government. Local
decision makers now participate in many policy processes. But
the central state still retains a great deal of control and power,
partly due to the highly regulatory nature of the legislative
and policy making process. Also the strong French tradition of
Le Grand Projet, with an emphasis on large-scale infrastructure
projects (eg the Channel Tunnel), promotes an enhanced role for
the central government.
3.3.11 French public services, in particular the health
system, are considered to be some of the best in the world, despite
the complexity of the government machinery.
This is linked partly to large government expenditure and administrative
capacity but also to what academics described as La logique de
l'honneur, or pride in public service. Others attribute the success
of the health system, in particular, to a partnership model of
government that has supported the introduction of private providers
into the market and promotes choice and diversity.
3.3.12 The focus for government reform in France in recent
years has been modernisation and efficiency rather than privatisation
and the hollowing out of government. For example, the French government
retains almost 85% ownership of the energy company EDF which runs
most of France's nuclear power stations. This can partly be explained
by a strong tradition of social solidarity and an adherence to
a European social model as opposed to an anglo-american markets
3.3.13 Much of the impetus for recent reform has come
from the European Union which set out broad themes for good governance
in a 2001 White Paper.
The paper highlighted the need for governments to be more transparent,
citizen focused and efficiently regulated. In addition, since
the introduction of the Euro and joint European monetary policy,
there has been a strong incentive for the French to minimise government
debt, an issue that has been seen to damage public finances in
France over many years.
There are three implications for good government in relation
to the French system described above:
Policy making and delivery is strongly influenced
by the regulatory nature of the French system. The effective implementation
of public policy objectives relies on supportive regulation. As
a result much of the debate about good government has centred
on making the legislative processes function better;
The French tradition of social solidarity means
that efficiency in the strictly commercial sense is often superseded
by concerns about equality and quality. The French healthcare
system was considered the world's most effective in terms of outcomes
and responsiveness by the World Health Organisation in 2000. But
at a cost. France spent approximately 9.8% of its GDP on health
in that year, compared to the UK which spent 5.8% then (and was
ranked 14th). However recent reform efforts have focused on cutting
costs whilst maintaining standards; and
The French state's resistance to marketisation
and privatisation means that much of the reform agenda has been
focused around modernised government. Good government in France
requires state bureaucracies to function better, rather than the
dismantling of the state bureaucracies. Evidence of this comes
from an independent report in 2004, which highlighted citizen
satisfaction levels with public services of between 70 and 85%.
3.4.1 Governments in the economically developed world
(and elsewhere) are increasingly practical in their approach to
good government. What works on the ground is prioritised over
questions about who delivers services and what structures are
in place. So while there are some broad characteristics and models
of good government, in reality there is no one size fits all solution
for all public policy areas. Furthermore, the different government
structures and traditions in countries shape the models used and
influence the decisions which policy makers and politicians come
to. Specifically, in the United States the federal structures
of checks and balances often promote "grid locked" government
but as a result policy competition is incentivised at a local
level. In France the need to fulfil socially solidaristic goals
often means that public service provision is well funded but expensive.
And the very different structures and traditions of governments
in the United States and France highlight why they have been chosen
as focus countries; they provide contrasting perspectives.
4. POLICY MAKING
4.1.1 The following section considers:
The strengths, weaknesses and success factors
for policy making and delivery in the United States and France.
Specific examples of good practice in policy development
Policy making and delivery are discussed in this
chapter and then policy evaluation and monitoring are considered
in Chapter 5 below. These processes are closely linked, and a
diagram demonstrating the connection between all policy processes
is at Annex C.
4.2 Policy making and delivery in the United States
4.2.1 US academics pointed to two areas of strength in
relation to policy making and delivery, both linked to the constitutional
structures in the United States:
Policy competition leading to innovation; and
4.2.2 Some commentators have identified competition as
an integral prerequisite for effective policy making. Tim Besley
of the London School of Economics concluded that societies with
policy competition not only have strong institutions, either private
or public or third sector, to deliver policies but they are more
likely to develop innovative policy solutions.
He also considered that single issue authorities that have directly
elected officials, like regulatory commissioners in the US for
example, foster innovation since they expand the scope of issues
that are put to the public vote and attention.
4.2.3 There was also agreement that the federalist system
in the United States encourages competition and that the potential
for inertia in central government can be an incentive for local
"It is one of the happy incidents of the federal system
that a single courageous state may, if its citizens choose, serve
as a laboratory and try novel social and economic experiments
without risk to the rest of the country."
Justice Bradneis, Supreme Court
4.2.4 Multiple jurisdictions competing to produce effective
policy outcomes can therefore drive up performance. For example,
an informed public and media are likely to point out superior
outcomes in other states and there will be pressure on policy
makers to justify their positions in the face of apparent alternatives
elsewhere. An example of state innovation leading to national
(and international) recognition and replication is the Wisconsin
welfare-to-work programme of the late nineties (detailed in the
box below.) As explained at 3.2.6 in Table C above, these programmes
were particularly effective since the model of government used
(partnership government) is often suitable when innovative solutions
A: WELFARE TO
The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reform Act
(PRWORA) passed in 1996 by Congress provided that a substantial
amount of money was given to the states to pay for welfare-to-work
programmes. This, in effect, was an admission by the federal government
that a bureaucratic, rules based and centralised system was not
able to tackle welfare dependency effectively. In the previous
half-century welfare rolls had remained stubbornly high regardless
of economic conditions. The Act paved the way for innovation at
the state level and the private and not-for-profit sector, along
with religious organisations, were invited to deliver welfare
"Wisconsin Works" and "Wisconsin First"
programmes were instituted between 1997 and 2000 to encourage
citizens back to work and were mostly targeted at single mothers
who received tailored support. The governor Tommy Thompson started
by dividing the state into 80 welfare-to-work areas which did
not correspond with county administrations who traditionally delivered
welfare support. As a result in 11 areas for-profit or not-for-profit
organisations ran programmes. Native American organisations delivered
programmes in three areas. Competitive tendering was also introduced
in some parts of the state. The result was the delivery of services
that were more personalised and responsive to local needs.
The scheme has now been replicated in many states and a networked
and partnership approach is also suggested in the recent Green
Paper published by the Department for Work and Pensions in the
an audit of the programmes in 2001, whilst circumspect on the
quality of jobs that people received as a result of the support
provided, acknowledged that the number of people dependent on
welfare had dropped and numbers in overall employment had increased.
It is the partnership approach that allowed different organisations
to enter the market, rather than the benefits conditionality element
of the programme that has been credited with the success. Elaine
Kamarck considers that PRWORA supported innovation at a local
level and that this was the crucial difference from what had been
in place before. She considered that the Act had created:
"a burst of creativity and innovation in helping women
from welfare dependence to work."
4.2.5 The partnership model used to encourage innovation,
as seen in the Wisconsin example above, is now being increasingly
employed in the economically developed world. The Swedish "free
school" model has allowed a number of different providers
into the market to deliver government funded school services.
This idea has also been strongly supported by the Conservative
opposition in the UK.
In New Zealand there are also high levels of the use of market
type mechanisms and numbers of civil servants reduced from 88,000
to 37,000 between 1988 and 1994.
4.2.6 The innovative culture, fostered by the competitive
nature of the US system, is supported through institutions such
as the Ash Institute for Democratic Governance and Innovation
at the Kennedy School of Government.
This institute has developed the Innovations in American Government
Awards Programme which provide local policy innovations with national
and international recognition. The strong US tradition of private
philanthropy helps to fund this institute and others around the
country and provides another important support for innovation.
4.2.7 One of the finalists for the 2008 Ash Institute
competition is the Learn and Earn programme in North Carolina
(details below) which is an example of a state government using
its power to influence the market to incentivise learners to extend
B: LEARN AND
North Carolina has attempted an ambitious programme of education
reform in response to the financial burdens of a University education
in the United States. The state believes that there is an economic
imperative for all citizens to equip themselves with the right
higher level skills to survive in the global economy.
The state Governor, Mike Easley, in addition to other education
initiatives, has instituted Learn and Earn schools that allow
students to study for university courses whilst still in high
school (secondary school). The schools are situated on University
campuses and give students the opportunity to achieve at least
two years worth of university credit without paying for tuition.
If students then decide to go to university and finish their degrees,
they can have their fees subsidised by the state as long as they
agree to get a part time job for eight to 10 hours a weekthus
meeting the state's educational and social policy aims at the
same time. The scheme has since been replicated in other states,
including New York and has gained national recognition.
This programme is an example of both government by market
and modernised government, since the State is using its ability
to financially support individuals in a market based system of
provision and because the scheme involves modernised state institutions
(the Learn and Earn schools). The solution provided by North Carolina
is also focused on those students who are often excluded from
higher education due to affordability issues and therefore is
an example of government trying to influence the market where
there are equity concerns.
4.2.8 There was also agreement amongst interviewees that,
as well as innovative policy making and policy solutions, the
US government can call upon a very broad level of analytical and
research capability to support evidence gathering from both within
and outside government. This too is linked to the constitutional
imperative for checks and balances. Since the system is prone
to inaction, a great deal of evidence needs to be generated in
order to achieve consensus and subsequent changes in the law.
"The US has perhaps more developed analytic capabilities
for policy making than any government in the world. There are
more people who understand economic modelling, econometrics, data
analysis, decisions theory etc."
Steve Kelman, Kennedy School of Government
4.2.9 Kelman considered that one of the major differences
between US and UK civil servants was their levels of specialist
expertise. He thought that whilst US government employees were
on the whole specialists in their fields, UK civil servants tended
to be "clever people who studied classics." This however
appears to be changing in the UK. For example, Fast Stream civil
servants are now required to have more practical, front line experience
before being promoted through the ranks, and there is a requirement
that chief financial officers of government departments must have
an accounting qualification.
4.2.10 Outside of government, the United States also
has swathes of think-tanks, universities and institutions that
support evidence based policy making. There are two institutions
in particular which are worthy of consideration in this respect:
the Kennedy School of Government and the Brookings Institute.
4.2.11 The Kennedy School of Government is considered
a major resource in the training and development of future leaders
and a place where the academic community is highly engaged in
the practicalities of policy. The school is based at Harvard University
and brings together academics, politicians and policy makers.
"The Kennedy School provides a respected arena where
ministers, senior officials and practitioners can come together
to discuss issues of public administration."
Public Administration Select Committee Report
4.2.12 The Washington based Brookings Institute is a
particularly well funded think tank that has links across the
political divide. Its website is a highly respected resource and
the Institute hosts effective discussion forums with speakers
from a number of backgrounds, using new media effectively.
A recent online discussion titled "Is it possible to fix
government?" included Mayor Bloomberg of New York, academics
and public sector consultants and allowed participants to respond
in real time over the internet.
It has 140 resident and non-resident scholars and in 2004 owned
assets of $258 million. This represents a marked difference with
the United Kingdom, whose think tanks are much smaller and less
well funded. Again
the American tradition of private philanthropy can be seen to
support the evidence gathering process.
4.2.13 However, although most academics interviewed agreed
that the US has considerable analytical capability to support
the making of policy, they asserted that there was less capacity
in relation to delivery. That is, whereas the US was considered
to have more data to inform legislative processes and decision
making, the UK was considered to have more data to support implementation
processes. The bias towards government balance in the United States
means that all the effort goes into changing the law rather than
seeing whether it is effective or not.
"What the UK calls evidence based policy making, I would
call evidence based delivery making."
Steve Kelman, Kennedy School of Government
4.2.14 US academics also highlighted what they considered
were critical success factors in ensuring policy is delivered
effectively. Steve Kelman, in particular, focuses on the relationship
between policy and practice; between government and front-line
public sector workers.
He reported that the following points need to be considered for
new policies to be implemented successfully:
Quick winsshowing people that change is
Positive feedback given to front-line deliverers;
Establishment of a reform coalition;
Paying attention to delivery (something which
Kelman considers is done more effectively in the UK).
4.2.15 Kelman is sceptical about the use of performance
related pay in the public services to deliver change. If there
are group incentives he believes pay bonuses can be effective
but considers that a focus on individuals can limit the incentive
"It works if it's an absolute system and not a relative
one. If you have a system where no matter how well teachers do
only half get bonuses that can be very problematic. If you have
a system where they are collectively rewarded for raising performance
that can be less problematic.
In the public sector you are unlikely to give people the kinds
of reward for achieving outcomes that you can in the private sector;
and because the outcomes are out of their control, that suggests
because you cannot give them the upside you should also not be
so harsh about their downside."
Steve Kelman, Kennedy School of Government
4.2.16 Finally, Kelman emphasises the need for continuity
and persistence in policy delivery rather than constant change.
A focus on delivery is an area where he thinks the UK is well
advanced, considering the creation of the Prime Minister's Delivery
Unit, which monitors and supports performance improvement across
government departments, as a key innovation. However, Kelman does
acknowledge the need for politicians to present new ideas. (For
more information on performance monitoring and evaluation see
"There is an unfortunate gap between incentives in the
political system for saying/doing something new and the need in
the delivery system for having more continuity and persistence
in promoting a smaller number of initiatives.
A whole number of mechanisms get set in motion that promote
the acceptance of change that simply require the passage of time."
Steve Kelman, Kennedy School of Government
4.2.17 Although US academics considered that attention
to policy delivery was more advanced in the UK, there was a general
consensus that more focus was needed in this area in the US and
that efforts should be centred on communication between government
departments and public sector workers and leaders.
4.3 Policy making and delivery in France
4.3.1 French academics interviewed highlighted three
linked aspects of policy making and delivery that were either
undergoing reform or needed further reform and that were influenced
by the distinctive nature of the French political system:
Pre and post legislative consultation; and
The alignment of the legislative and delivery
4.3.2 France hosts a highly regulated system which means
that policy making and delivery are primarily driven by the legislative
processes (see section 3.2 above for more detail). The current
constitution allows only the executive the power to initiate legislation
whereas before 1958 parliament also had that right. The constitution
of the Fifth Republic, passed in 1958 by President Charles de
Gaulle, actually intended to create a strong executive in order
to limit the instability that existed before when governments
often fell. Academics argued that a by-product though has been
the creation of a relatively supine parliament.
4.3.3 Academics considered that stronger parliamentary
scrutiny would support good government. Currently the executive
introduces draft legislation, sends it to the Conseil des Ministres
(Conseil d'Etat and Conseil Constitutional) for legal review and
then hands it over to parliament for what is described as a "validation"
rather than a scrutiny process. Parliamentarians can direct proposals
to the government to amend legislation but cannot make amendments
themselves. However, over the past 50 years, on average, one parliamentary
proposal is adopted into law for every 40 draft laws introduced
by the government. Legislative processes and therefore policy
making reside primarily with the executive.
4.3.4 Since parliament has a relatively weak role at
the national level, legislators are much more engaged in their
local areas. For example, out of the 577 parliamentarians, often
only 30 will participate in plenary sessions where debates can
be superficial and limited. There is no equivalent of Westminster's
Prime Minister's Question time where almost all MPs are present.
Furthermore, although six permanent commissions review all draft
legislation, they have few resources and the presidents of these
commissions are automatically members of the parliamentary majority.
There is no tradition of independent committee scrutiny similar
to the select committee structure in Westminster or the congressional
oversight process in the US. As a result, scrutiny, review and
evaluation of draft laws in France are limited and therefore policy
making is reliant on the effectiveness of the executive. Control
over the executive is performed almost exclusively by the executive.
4.3.5 However despite reservations about the role of
parliament in the policy making process, academics agreed that
the new constitutional amendment proposed by President Sarkozy
in July 2008 was designed to tackle these issues. The amendment
proposed, amongst other things, the following:
An increase from six permanent parliamentary committees
The transfer of control over the daily parliamentary
agenda to parliament;
That power be given to parliament to amend draft
legislation rather than just make proposals for changes; and
The introduction of a new law which will increase
the number of preliminary impact studies carried out before legislation
4.3.6 In addition to the reforms laid out above, interviewees
highlighted that policy success in France depended on the extent
to which public consultation was carried out, and the citizen
voice was listened to. Relatively high levels of collective direct
action, illustrated for example by the strikes against Prime Minister
de Villepin's social security reforms in 2006, underline the need
to engage the public when difficult decisions are made. (See box
Prime Minister de Villepin's 2006 law banning smoking in
public places combined with wider public health efforts were seen
by interviewees to be examples of successful policy making and
implementation. Academics highlighted the unusually high levels
of public consultation that took place and the use of modernised
local institutions to promote citizen engagement as the critical
In May 2004, the Minister of Health launched a public study
through the General Inspectorate of Sanitation and Social Affairs
(L'Inspection Générale des Affaires Sanitaires et
Sociales) to explore the feasibility of a complete smoking ban
in public places. In addition after draft legislation was drawn
up, the ministries of public health and social affairs conducted
high profile communications campaigns on the benefits of the law
which encompassed a wide range of media.
The legislation was just one part of wider anti-smoking efforts
and formed part of a four year public health programme. The government
took a very proactive role in driving through these reforms and
creating the necessary institutions for implementation. New regional
public health interest groups were set-up and organised regular
consultations on the programme's various themes, including the
anti-smoking efforts. The policy making process in this case was
therefore seen as transparent and consultative.
Academics considered that this area of government policy
bridged the gap between a prime ministerial declaration of a new
law and the necessary consultation needed for the law to be enacted
in real life. One academic compared the anti-smoking legislation
favourably to the 2006 proposed changes to the 35 hour working
week which were not properly consulted on and therefore met fierce
street protests. The strong tradition of social solidarity in
France means that civic society is acutely conscious about being
listened to and that for government policy to work consultation
has to be effective.
"If there is no social dialogue during the decision making
process, then there is a big risk of blocking."
4.3.7 This case study demonstrates an example of modernised
government, where the citizen voice was engaged and traditional
state bureaucracies were decentralised to promote wider consultation.
4.3.8 Interviewees also reported a need to align better
the legislative and policy making processes with the delivery
processes. At present there can often be delays between when a
law is passed and the necessary Décret d'application which
enforces the regulatory changes needed to enact the law in practice.
The passing of Décrets d'application are dependent on individual
ministers and ministries having the authority and commitment to
push them through and as a result many laws are weakly implemented
and not accompanied by a Décret. Laws which are contentious
are unlikely to receive full ministerial backing and therefore
regulations can often be left unchanged.
"The more sensitive a law, the less likely it is to be
4.3.9 The lack of regulatory provision and consultation
attached to a law was evident in relation to Prime Minister de
Villepin's law for affordable housing (Loi Dalot). The law was
passed quickly by parliament in three months but with neither
public consultation, nor an analysis of how much it would cost,
nor an understanding of the necessary regulatory changes. As a
result the law stayed at the level of principle and no action
was taken to implement it once it was adopted.
"At the moment, successful policy delivery depends on
the relevant ministry's ability and commitment to pass the Décret
and implement the new law. There is a big gap between the Prime
Minister's declaration and broader public consultations that are
needed to co-ordinate the policy delivery."
4.3.10 In order to combat this discrepancy between law
making and enactment, the Sarkozy government introduced the Circulaire
of 29 February 2008 on the application of the law. The Circulaire
sets out the following principles of reform:
An indicative timeframe of a maximum of six months
was set for a ministry to begin the delivery of a new law;
Each ministry has to set up an administrative
body with responsibility for coordinating the application of new
laws in their policy area;
An inter-ministerial meeting must be convened
following the adoption of new legislation so that implementation
and regulatory processes can be assigned to relevant ministries;
A review meeting must be scheduled three months
after legislation is passed to assess progress and identify any
risks or challenges to the full implementation and
Finally, in line with the 2001 European White
Paper on good governance, the ministry must identify an agency
able to deliver the new policy.
4.3.11 However, despite all the concerns about the legislative
processes raised by academics there was still a consensus that
public services are delivered to a high standard in France. Some
felt this is linked to a culture of respect and pride in public
service, whilst others considered that high expenditure and large
numbers of administrators are key factors. Commentators outside
France however point to the model of government used as the most
important driver for success with particular reference to the
French health system (see box below).
D: FRENCH HEALTHCAREPARTNERSHIP
France has a mixed provision healthcare system in which public
funding is combined with individual payments, where private and
government hospitals compete and where the citizen has complete
freedom of choice. Actually, despite perceptions of France as
a highly centralised state that shuns the introduction of private
sector providers, the health care system shows that good policy
development and delivery in France can rely on different approaches.
Even some US commentators, despite reservations about "socialised
medicine", consider the French system a good model for reform
of US healthcare.
French citizens have a choice of doctor, whether a GP or
a specialist, to whom they pay a fee and typically claim back
75-80% depending on the treatment. In addition there is provision
for approximately six million poorer citizens who are not expected
to pay upfront at all. Choice is paramount and regardless of whether
a patient is subject to co-payment or not, they can self-refer
to a specialist inside or outside a hospital. Furthermore French
insurance schemes make no distinction between state and private
hospitals and patients are free to go to the institution of their
Compulsory insurance covers the whole working population
which accounts for about 20% of payroll including employer and
employee contributions. Individuals can identify on their pay
slips how much of their salary is going into the Sécurité
Sociale (the national social security fund which mostly goes on
health care costs) in the same way UK citizens can identify national
System performance indicators are positive. There are virtually
no waiting lists and there are high levels of citizen satisfaction.
Data from the late nineties show over 65% satisfaction with services
compared with 48% in the UK.
Equally France performs well by almost all population and health
For example, in 2000, the World Health Organisation considered
the French health care system the best in the world.
However, other observers have criticised the system as being
overly expensive and efforts have been made to try and cut costs,
in particular with the introduction of L'Hopital 2007.
Nevertheless, there was general agreement amongst academics that
the French healthcare system provides a good service to its citizens,
linked in part to the model of government used: "partnership
4.3.12 The case study highlighted above shows that the
French healthcare system prioritises choice over the primacy of
state provision. Private providers are welcomed into the market
in order to support the overall quality of the service. This model
has been used in relation to schools in Sweden where a number
of different providers including voluntary, private and religious
organisations are charged with delivering state services with
state funding. In the UK there are elements of this model in the
health service. In recent years private provision has been used
to supplement state hospital provision. However the patient cannot
choose private provision and expect the state to refund the treatment.
4.4.1 Academics in both the United States and France
highlighted areas of strength and weakness in relation to policy
making and delivery in their countries. In the United States there
was agreement that broad analytical capacity and strong policy
competition helped to support the policy process. Interviewees
considered that both of these aspects were influenced by the constitutional
nature of the US system and the embedded checks and balances.
Equally, there was concern amongst academics that the US needed
to focus more on delivery processes in order to ensure improvements
on the ground. In France, there was agreement that public services
were delivered well and that recent reform efforts to bolster
the scrutiny role of parliament were heading in the right direction.
However concerns were still raised about the efficiency of the
regulatory and legislative processes that shape French policy
5. PERFORMANCE MONITORING
5.1.1 This section considers:
How governments in the United States and France
monitor and evaluate performance; and
Examples of best practice in monitoring and evaluation.
5.1.2 As described above in Chapter 4 performance monitoring
and evaluation are vital parts of both policy making and delivery
and should not be considered in isolation. The quotation below
highlights the interconnectedness of all parts of the policy process.
"Effective policy competition requires both that policy
is effectively analysed and that research findings are disseminated
in an effective way. This requires a number of institutions. Policy
is analysed within governmental institutions such as government
funded policy units as well as independent think tanks. The role
of higher education institutions with a strong research tradition
is also a vital part of the process of policy analysis and evaluation."
Tim Besley, London School of Economics
5.2 Performance monitoring and evaluation in the United
5.2.1 In the United States there are a number of institutions
responsible for judging and monitoring performance (for more details
see Annex C). The main federal organisations are:
The Government Accountability Office (GAO): The
GAO plays a broadly similar role to the National Audit Office
(NAO) in the UK and reports directly to Congress. The GAO looks
to ensure that government programmes are delivering value;
The Office of Management and Budget (OMB): This
organisation is part of the executive branch and seeks to monitor
the performance of central government departments using a number
of rating tools;
The Inspectors General: They conduct investigations
to support probity and transparency amongst public servants and
ensure federal programmes are delivering; and
Congressional hearings: A hearing is a meeting
or session of a Senate, House, Joint or Special Committee of Congress,
usually open to the public, to obtain information and opinions
on proposed legislation, conduct an investigation, or evaluate
the activities of a government department or the implementation
of a Federal law.
5.2.2 The central critique of these accountability structures
voiced by US academics interviewed is that, as a result of the
system of checks and balances, the organisations listed above
promote accountability of the processes rather than the outcomes
of good government. The focus on balanced government encourages
vigilance between organisations rather than collaboration.
5.2.3 Elaine Kamarck argues that this process focus is
a by-product of a rules-based system that naturally develops in
traditional bureaucracies. If rules are kept, the bureaucracy
is working. Another US academic, Robert Behn points out that the
problems are even more serious than just performance neglect.
He describes how a system designed to prevent corruption ended
up creating a system inundated by poor performance.
5.2.4 Furthermore, Kelman considers that there is an
audit rather than advisory culture around government performance
in the United States. He argues that reports from the GAO and
Inspectors General are highly critical documents in contrast to
UK equivalents which are typically more balanced.
"This reflects the American approach that the job of
these institutions is to create a check. The job is not to advise
but to audit.
You can predict the difference between NAO and GAO outputs
by looking at our different constitutions."
Steve Kelman, Kennedy School of Government
5.2.5 Moreover academics considered that even the list
of high-risk federal programmes that the GAO submits to Congress
is not acted on properly. Institutionally antagonistic government
is seen to have done its job once one branch censures another
rather than when outcomes are delivered for citizens.
5.2.6 But within the context of this general critique,
there was agreement that the processes for assessing government
performance were improving. The Government Performance and Results
Act (GPRA) passed by Congress in 1993, for example, introduced
performance measures and incentives to the public sector. Although
interviewees conceded that the new performance orientated structures
defined by the Act did not match the systems in either the United
Kingdom or New Zealand, they still set a precedent which entailed
a renewed focus on improving performance.
"Even though many of the performance measures set by
the federal government in the initial stages were so low that
they could easily be achieved, they still exist as a baseline
for improvement by government agencies and their managers".
Elaine Kamarck, Kennedy School of Government
5.2.7 Furthermore, Kamarck cites the OMB's Programme
Assessment Rating Tool (PART), which assigns scores to government
programmes to rate their effectiveness as a good innovation (see
box below). In addition there is the OMB's Executive Branch Management
Scorecard which rates federal government departments on a traffic
Third party and independent scrutiny is also seen to be effective,
an example being Governing magazine which grades each individual
state on an A to F scale in relation to infrastructure, performance
and targets achieved.
All these measures seek to promote transparency and accountability
and all are publicly available.
E: PROGRAMME ASSESSMENT
The Programme Assessment Rating Tool (PART) was developed
to assess and improve programme performance so that the Federal
government could better monitor outcomes. A PART review aims to
identify strengths and weaknesses to inform funding and management
decisions. The PART therefore looks at all factors that affect
and reflect performance including purpose and design, performance
measurements, evaluations, strategic planning, programme management
and results. The PART includes a consistent series of analytical
questions and therefore allows programmes to show improvements
over time and supports comparisons between similar programmes.
PART gives programmes starred ratings with three stars indicating
an effective programme and no stars indicating an ineffective
Extracts from an example of a recent assessment of the National
School Lunch Programme is detailed below. This programme received
two stars in its 2006 assessment:
"The National School Lunch Programme is a federally-assisted
meal programme operating in public and non-profit profit private
schools. It provides nutritionally balanced, low-cost or free
lunches and is intended to safeguard the health and well-being
of the Nation's children and support domestic agricultural production.
The programme has made progress in improving the
nutritional content of the meals by reducing the proportion of
calories from fat and saturated fat;
The programme has implemented a series of new
short-term measures focusing on meal quality and programme accountability
that better track progress towards long-term goals; but
The programme does not have a reliable measure
of the level of erroneous payments it makes.
The National School Lunch Programme and the OMB are taking
the following actions to improve the performance of the programme.
Conducting a nationally representative study updating
information on the nutrient content of meals; and
Working to produce a reliable estimate of erroneous
payments by 2007."
5.2.8 The US accountability and scrutiny measures highlighted
above are similar to some of the initiatives launched in Whitehall
in recent years. The Prime Minister's Delivery Unit (PMDU) established
in June 2001, for example, seeks to improve the delivery of public
services by collating and disseminating performance data about
central government departments. The unit reports directly to the
Prime Minister who sets the priorities for delivery.
This is something which is mirrored by the OMB's management scorecard.
Both the PMDU and OMB are examples of central government organisations
that seek to bring in management best practice to ensure that
government delivers on the ground.
5.2.9 In addition to national monitoring of programmes,
Kamarck and Kelman consider performance targets for government
departments and public sector organisations as potentially useful.
Kelman asserts that they should be used as the public service's
counterpart to the profit measure in a company and a means of
eliciting performance improvements rather than judging people.
"It's not just about having performance targets, but
using them as a learning tool. They provide a natural experiment
in evidence based delivery.
There is a false and unfortunate dichotomy between the public
service ethos and performance targets. It seems that either you
drive up performance by relying on the public service ethos or
you rely on targets. In reality they are complementary concepts."
Steve Kelman, Kennedy School of Government
5.2.10 Elaine Kamarck also sees performance measures
as a means of supporting front-line deliverers as they seek to
work around overly bureaucratic traditional government organisations.
"The real impact of performance measures is to give public
managers the incentives to change or to work around whatever rules
impede achievement of the measure set."
Elaine Kamarck, Kennedy School of Government
5.2.11 Academics highlighted the need to align budgets
with performance targets and priority areas. An example of where
performance review, target setting and monitoring were effectively
utilised is detailed in the box below.
Here strategic budgeting that matched outcome targets with funding
streams was seen as a way of monitoring and ultimately improving
F: PERFORMANCE BASED
In 2003, the newly elected Governor of Michigan, Jennifer
Granholm, decided she wanted to put a greater emphasis on performance
monitoring and evaluation. She started by asking the citizens
of the state what their priorities were through a series of "town
hall" face-to-face meetings and as a result identified six
cross departmental areas of concern. For each area cross agency
work groups were asked to identify specific strategies through
action plans and set performance indicators to measure progress.
Alongside this the Governor reviewed and assessed the current
performance of all state programmes and considered which work
group they fitted with. She then assigned a general fund budget
cap and an overall budget cap to each work group, which were to
govern all decision making. The groups found that they could not
afford some programmes and were encouraged both to think creatively
and look at current performance measures to focus on activities
that could achieve results. Final decisions on expenditure were
down to the Governor, with consultation from the work groups.
The process of review and monitoring was considered a success
as it was able to align spending to local priorities.
"Michigan's recent movement to integrate state-wide and
agency strategic planning through the Cabinet Action Plan is indeed
impressive. The goals and objectives outlined in the plan are
inherently results focused and include targets for future performance."
Governing Performance Project, Grading the States 2005
5.2.12 The Michigan case study highlighted above mirrors
the efforts of other national governments around the world. In
particular the Australian Government between 1983 and 1996 introduced
a number of innovative measures to improve performance management
which were highlighted by the World Bank as examples of good practice.
The government introduced formal evaluation and planning for the
first time, required every government programme to be evaluated
at least once every three to five years and aligned objectives
more closely with budgeting decisions. The introduction of Public
Service Agreements and three year budgeting in the UK also reflect
efforts to align budgets to performance.
More recently these principles have become more localised with
the introduction of Local Area Agreements.
5.2.13 There are two trends that relate to performance
monitoring and evaluation in the United States and are relevant
to good government models:
Publicly available performance ratings and target
setting are seen as effective means of improving services. US
academics, in line with the UK approach of targets and league
tables employed in the late 90s and 2000s, considered that the
performance of state institutions could be improved through information
sharing and managerialist methods; and
Innovative budgeting is supported at a state level.
The federalist structure that promotes policy competition and
local autonomy allows individual states to experiment with new
budgeting methods which align citizen priorities with the services
5.2.14 The good government model used in both cases highlighted
above is modernised government since efforts are directed at making
the state institutions and systems function better rather than
outsourcing state functions. More than this, performance monitoring
and evaluation are functions that are difficult to marketise as
they involve democratically elected officials holding to account
the bureaucracies of state. While external auditors and consultancies
are often used to conduct independent evaluations of policy programmes,
final budgeting decisions and designation of priorities are carried
out by politicians.
5.3 Performance monitoring and evaluation in France
5.3.1 There was general agreement amongst academics that
the French systems for monitoring and evaluation were in need
of reform. Parliament's role in oversight and scrutiny of policy
was considered relatively weak and performance monitoring was
seen to rest primarily with individual ministries and the executive
as a whole (see section 4.2 above). The President sends a Lettre
de Cadrage (mission letter) to ministries each year setting out
targets and objectives, but there are few sanctions for poor performance.
So while parliament can censure the government, it has done so
only once in the last 50 years.
"There is no separation between the one who designs and
delivers policy and the one who evaluates iteach ministry
evaluates its own work."
François Lafarge, ENA
5.3.2 Even the Cour des Comptes (the supreme audit institution
of France), which is a judicial institution and was recognised
in the 2001 constitutional amendment as independent from the government,
was criticised by some interviewees as focussing more on financial
compliance rather than the overall policy issues. In this respect
it differs from the UK model which seeks to inform policy implementation
and where the control function lies with parliament.
5.3.3 However successive French governments have sought
to improve performance monitoring and evaluation. Reforms have
centred mainly on implementing wider reviews of government effectiveness,
increasing efficiency and ensuring strategic objective setting
is utilised in the budgetary processes. The two most recent reform
programmes have been:
2001Loi Organique Relative aux Lois de
Finances (LOLF): This was a constitutional by-law that involved
setting performance indicators and aligning budgets with objectives;
des Politiques Publiques (RGPP) (General Review of Public Policies):
The RGPP is driven by a desire to deliver a balanced budget by
2012 and seeks efficiency savings and a full scale review of government
5.3.4 The LOLF paved the way for wide ranging reforms
of public finances and introduced managerialist methods into the
state's bureaucracies. Reforms were designed to align budgets
to government objectives and user outcomes and to free up individual
civil servants to take control of specific programmes. Local and
central government managers were also asked to be more accountable;
targets were set and performance indicators drawn up. In addition,
the Cour des Comptes have been carrying out more performance audits,
and the reforms currently being considered as part of Sarkozy's
July 2008 constitutional amendment (see para 4.2.5 above) may
lead to further change. Some have suggested that one possible
result would be the creation of a parliamentary committee, modelled
on the UK Public Accounts Committee, to better deal with the Cour's
performance audit reports and therefore strengthen parliamentary
"The LOLF radically changed the budget process. Its main
role was to justify public spending and each individual budget
now needs targets and indicators."
5.3.5 The reforms proposed that three broad criteria
be used to measure performance: social and economic effectiveness,
the quality of services provided and efficiency. Each year, managers
were asked to report to ministers on progress against those criteria.
Furthermore, in 2005 "rotating" three month performance
audits were introduced by former minister of the budget Jean-François
Copé to establish even greater scrutiny. Also, some senior
civil servants' performance ratings were linked to the objectives
set through the LOLF.
5.3.6 However, the LOLF did not propose targets as specific
as those that were imposed in the UK in the late 1990s and 2000s.
Instead there was more focus on indicators of performance. An
example of the performance management tool used and sample indicators
is detailed in the box below:
G: LOLF PERFORMANCE ANALYSIS
There are three lines of performance analysis:
||Sample Goal||Sample Indicator
|Citizen||Social and economic effectiveness
||Health: cut breast cancer screening time
||Average time elapsing before breast cancer detected
|User||Quality of services provided
||Police: cut police response time||Average time between police forces being alerted and their time of arrival at the scene
|Taxpayer||Efficiency||Roads: reduce maintenance costs
||Average maintenance cost per kilometre (A roads)
5.3.7 The 2001 reforms were built on by President Sarkozy
who in 2007 launched a government wide review: the Révision
Générale des Politiques Publiques (RGPP) (General
Review of Public Policies). This initiative was linked to a commitment
by the French government to deliver a balanced budget by 2012
and much of the focus of the programme is concerned with delivering
more efficient government through spending cuts and the streamlining
"France is now going through a period of change that
Great Britain went through during the Thatcher years. The main
driver is the idea that public administration costs too much and
the government needs to reduce costs. This is the crux of the
RGPPto understand the cost and then rationalise the public
administration and make it more flexible and effective."
5.3.8 One of the key features of the reform programme
in terms of evaluation tools was a list of seven evaluative and
analytical questions. The questions aimed to facilitate a systematic
analysis of government policies through a focus on outcomes and
outputs and to challenge existing structures. The questions are
detailed in the box below:
5.3.9 There are three distinctive trends related to the
2001 and 2007 reforms that are relevant to the good government
The President has taken greater control over performance
monitoring and evaluation. Specifically, RGPP reviews of performance
are prepared by approximately 200 public and private auditors
under the supervision of the Comité de Suivi. This committee
is co-chaired by the Secretary General of the Elysée on
behalf of the President and the Director of the Cabinet of the
Prime Minister. All final decisions are taken by the Conseil de
Modernisation des Politiques Publiques, chaired by the President.
This centralisation has been counter-balanced by the 2008 proposed
constitutional amendment (see section 4.2) which has given more
control to parliament, however there are still questions about
how well policies are scrutinised outside of the Elysée
Best practice from industry has been employed.
The consulting-style influence is apparent in the presentation
of ministries' modernisation plans and in the methodology designed
for the reforms. La Direction Générale de la Modernisation
de l'Etat, whose recently appointed director has long and senior
experience with global management consultancy McKinseys, is specifically
in charge of providing methodological support to audit teams and
The budget has become more transparent and strategic.
Constitutional constraints may limit the government's ability
to formally present a three-year budget to parliament; however,
the government has repeatedly confirmed its intention to give
ministers and programme managers maximum visibility on their future
budgets in order to conduct reforms over the medium-term. This
reform mirrors the budgeting changes that took place in the UK
in the early 2000s and resulted in three year budget cycles and
Public Service Agreements.
5.3.10 Although French reforms have retained the power
of the central state, they have sought to modernise the central
bureaucracies. The model used is therefore modernised government.
Whilst there was some scepticism amongst academics about how successful
the reforms would be in the long term, there was agreement that
they were heading in the right direction.
5.4.1 Performance monitoring and evaluation in both the
United States and France share similar trajectories. There is
a common focus on strategic budgeting and funding following the
preferences of citizens. The culture of target setting as seen
in the UK in the late 90s and early 2000s is not embedded hugely
in the two focus countries, although academics expressed support
for methods that measure performance and set standards. However,
interviewees considered that UK measures to support best practice
in performance monitoring were effective, in particular US academics
highlighted the success of the PMDU and French academics praised
the streamlining of the UK budget under successive governments
since the 80s.
5.4.2 Performance monitoring and evaluation seek to improve
the performance of government structures and therefore are concerned
mainly with the modernised government model. Accountability measures
relating to budgets is an area where elected officials often retain
as much control as possible otherwise they might be open to criticism
about lack of oversight on public expenditure.
6. LESSONS LEARNED
6.1.1 This section considers:
The overall trends and characteristics of international
models of good government; and
How, within the parameters of the UK's constitutional
framework and institutional architecture, best practice from abroad
might be utilised.
6.2 Overall trends in international models of good government
6.2.1 Our findings point to the fact that, despite the
different constitutional and institutional nature of the focus
countries, there are some areas of convergence around what government
should look like in the future. Crucially there is a view in the
United States, France and the UK that good government should focus
on individuals rather than institutions and bureaucracies, and
that citizen voice should drive administrative structures and
not the other way round. Whether it be the re-invented government
initiative in the United States, the LOLF in France or the transformational
government agenda in the UK, good government increasingly relies
on citizen engagement.
The view that the "the Gentleman in Whitehall really does
know better what is good for people than the people know themselves",
is being replaced by an altogether different perspective. This
holds not only that the public rightly expect to be engaged in
the policy process but that such engagement actually enables government
to make and deliver policy more effectively.
6.2.2 However within the overarching trend of making
government more citizen-focused, there are still different models
and traditions of good government in different countries. It would
be wrong to consider that since there is a globalised economy
with free movement of capital (and in many cases people) that
all governments should seek to marketise, privatise and out-source.
France still maintains a highly regulated and statist model of
government, where social solidarity pervades and the state has
large stakes in industries which are fully privatised in the United
States and the UK. There may even be a growing willingness by
governments in other parts of the world to mobilise modernised
government and partnership government models where previously
they have sought to privatise. The fact that the UK government
has taken Railtrack and, more recently, the Northern Rock bank
into public ownership, or that the US government has underwritten
mortgage guarantors Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac or that New Zealand
has introduced the state back into areas they had previously outsourced
points to a new trajectory. So in times of crisis or where there
is a perceived lack of public accountability, governments are
often required to be bigger, not smaller. So in practice there
is no one model of good government, only trends and traditions.
6.2.3 It is important to note that both American and
French academics highlighted the success of UK good government
initiatives. In particular, UK systems for performance monitoring
and evaluation developed through three year budgeting and the
Public Service Agreements were seen as effective, as was the introduction
of the Prime Minister's Delivery Unit. Interviewees also viewed
positively the UK National Audit Office (NAO). They considered
that the NAO was supportive and had an advisory capacity which
contrasted with the unhelpfully adversarial nature of the GAO
or overly legalistic and regulatory nature of the Cour des Comptes.
6.3 Best practice from the United States and France
6.3.1 In terms of best practice that can support good
government in the UK, there were some useful examples:
An increase in analytical and evidence gathering
capacity supports effective policy making. Academics considered
that the US had an advantage in this area in part because civil
servants tended to be more specialist rather than generalist and
also because of the large number of non-governmental organisations
involved with policy development.
The wider policy community (academia, research centres, think
tanks, etc.) is much larger in the US than the UK. The history
of think tanks in the UK has seen particular periods where individual
institutions had a critical influence (Adam Smith Institute in
the 1970s; ippr in the 1990s) rather than ongoing and sustained
power. Frequent calls for a "British Brookings" reflect
both respect for that particular institution's policy range and
authority, and also the general sense that the UK's intellectual
corpus is comparatively thin. In recent years however, the UK
government and others have worked to increase capacity with the
introduction of the National School of Government and the Institute
of Government. It will be interesting to see if these organisations
support the development of a wider evidence base for new policy
initiatives which can engender consensus and therefore a greater
chance of full policy implementation.
Policy competition encourages innovation. A key
finding from the US system is that the competitive nature of the
institutional set-up means that there is often robust competition
to find new solutions. Competition can often lead to innovative
solutions to entrenched problems. Policy competition exists in
the UK but, reflecting its political structure, to a lesser extent.
However at the local authority level, individual authorities observe,
examine and co-opt best practice from other authorities. Furthermore,
devolution is likely to mean that policy innovation will increasingly
be seen at a national level. As rival policy solutions are debated
and their outcomes evaluated policy contestability is more likely
to occur. In addition,
the UK government might consider encouraging policy competitions
around certain areas of public policy where there is a need for
creative thinking and a new approach.
A mixed provision in public services does not
necessarily impact on issues of equity. The French healthcare
system shows that a system that includes private providers and
co-payment does not necessarily undercut social solidarity. With
pressures in the UK to keep the costs down in areas such as adult
social care due to changing demographics, there may be some pointers
in the French system about how to share costs with individuals
whilst at the same time catering for the whole population.
The reform process works best when there is effective
public engagement. The move towards greater personalisation in
public services requires greater public engagement in public services
at every step of the processfrom research and policy design
through to delivery and evaluation. The French experience demonstrates
the necessity for public consultation and the need for the engagement
of all stakeholders if the reform process is to work. Deep and
effective consultation is particularly important in areas where
a change in the behaviour or working conditions of a large group
of people is required. This contrasts with at least the perception
in the UK that consultation is often, at best, an irritating legal
obligation for officials to endure or, at worse, meaningless because
policy outcomes have already been determined. The challenge for
policy makers, however, is to recognise that meaningful consultation
is an important part of the wider move towards embedding citizen
voice in policy making. Moreover, such an informed approach to
policy making is arguably more likely to secure effective policy
delivery as the French example demonstrates.
Rigorous performance measures sharpen policy focus
and improve outcomes. The widespread view that the UK is "ahead
of the game" in this area should not militate against learning
from oversees practice. In the US, the role of both government
scrutiny (eg Performance Assessment Rating Tool) and external
scrutiny, (eg Governing magazine'sperformance grading)
may provide lessons. Similarly, the performance of the Révision
Générale des Politiques Publiques (RGPP) (General
Review of Public Policies) may prove instructive as the Operational
Efficiency review commences.
6.3.2 Good government is changing. Although no single
model has swept in to replace former orthodoxies, there are clear
signs that a new set of principles is gaining wider acceptance.
The old clash of political economies (collectivist state versus
the free market) has been replaced by greater flexibility: a more
fleet-footed approach to constructing policy solutions; a willingness
to mould a more creative mix of providers (public, private and
voluntary) to suit different conditions on the ground. New principles
relate instead to what best enables effective policy making and
delivery; they include: research and analysis to provide evidence-based
rigour behind policy making; effective public engagement and consultation;
hard-hitting performance measures; transparency throughout and
evaluation thereafter. Further, there is increasing recognition
that policy making and delivery are inextricably linked and cannot
be seen as separate processes if implementation is to be successful.
If good government today lacks soaring rhetoric and ideological
debate, it may at least equip policy makers with the tools to
bring about meaningful change and persuade many of its citizens
along the way.
Elaine Kamarck in The End of Government as We Know It: Making
Public Policy Work (London, 2007) describes the post-bureaucratic
age in government of the 20th and early 21st century Back
Daniel Kaufimann and Aart Kraay in Governance Indicators: Where
are We, Where Should We Be Going, (World Bank Institute Global
Governance Group, 2007) make the distinction between de facto
and de jure indicators of good governance Back
2007 saw the decline of the sub-prime mortgage market in the United
States which led to a loss of confidence and liquidity in global
financial markets Back
The 1998 OECD Report, Public Management Reform and Economic
and Social Development describes a "democratic deficit"
that is undermining trust in governments. See http://www.olis.oecd.org/olis/1998doc.nsf/LinkTo/PUMA-SBO(98)9 Back
The subsidiarity principle was included in the 1992 Maastricht
Treaty of the European Union in the context of the division of
powers and responsibilities between European governmental bodies
and their member countries. The principle has also been applied
to the role and structure of government at all levels. See http://www.eurotreaties.com/maastrichtec.pdf Back
For example, see the 2007 report at http://www.nao.org.uk/publications/nao_reports/07-08/070898ies.htm Back
Michael Barber, Instruction to Deliver, Fighting to Transform
Britain's Public Services (London, 2007) passim Back
IBM conducted a study into e-government in France in 2003. See
These models have been adapted from Elaine Kamarck's book, The
End of Government as We Know It: Making Public Policy Work,
(London 2007.) She highlights three models for implementing policy:
"Re-invented Government", "Government by Network"
and "Government by Market". This commentary has added
privatisation as a fourth model that government might use to achieve
certain policy goals. Back
Donald F. Kettl, The Global Public Management Revolution,
(Washington, 2000) p.34 Back
Elaine Kamarck, The End of Government as We Know It: Making Public
Policy Work, (London 2007), p1 Back
See link for information about "circuit breaker" teams
in New Zealand:
The 2007 Department of Health Green Paper (below) set out plans
to allow individuals to take more control over their palliative
care with the issuing of individual budgets. See http://www.dh.gov.uk/en/publicationsandstatistics/publications/publicationspolicyandguidance/dh_4106477 Back
In 1979 nationalised industries represented 9% of UK GDP; in 2003
they represented 2% of GDP Back
British Telecom was privatised by the Thatcher-led government
in 1984 and New Zealand Telecom was sold in 1990 Back
Elaine Kamarck, The End of Government as We Know It: Making
Public Policy Work, (London 2007), p.10 Back
The National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE) is charged
with approving NHS payment for specific drugs and is often criticised
for prioritising cost over effectiveness. See example from 2006:
30 Lockheed Martin IMS, traditionally an aerospace business, decided
to bid for welfare-to-work contracts in the United States in 1996.
In addition, according to William Ryan in the New Landscape
for Nonprofits (Harvard Business Review, January-February
1991), Maximus, another for-profit in the welfare to work network,
describes social security as a potential $21 billion market Back
Elaine Kamarck in The End of Government as We Know It: Making
Public Policy Work (London, 2007), Chapter 1 Back
The UK bank Northern Rock was taken into public ownership in February
2008. The United States Federal Reserve agreed to underwrite mortgage
guarantors Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in July 2008. Back
"Ambition must be made to counteract ambition", Maddison,
Federalists papers, no.51 Back
Roger Porter, Presidential Decision Making: The Economic Policy
Board (New York, 1980) and Alexander George, Presidential
Decision Making in Foreign Policy (New York, 1980) Back
The UK think tank Civitas produced a report in 2001 highlighting
the advantages of the choice and competition offered by the French
health care system. See http://www.civitas.org.uk/pdf/cs17.pdf Back
In 2005, former BNP Paribas Chief Executive produced a report
for the French finance ministry which showed national debt as
66% of GDP and growing. National debt was seen to be linked to
an expanding civil service and increasing pension liabilities. Back
Tim Besley, Political Institutions and Policy Competition
(London School of Economics, 2005) Back
Elaine Kamarck, The End of Government as We Know It: Making Public
Policy Work, (London 2007), p.49 Back
Michael Gove, the shadow spokesman for Children, Schools and Families,
gave a speech to the ippr in August 2008 setting out his proposals
for schools. See http://www.ippr.org.uk/podcasts Back
Christopher Pollitt and Geert Bouckaert, Public Management
Reform: A Comparative Analysis (Oxford, 2004), p. 280 Back
The UK think tank the ippr, which is considered to be influential
with the current Labour government, has 36 research staff Back
Steve Kelman, Unleashing Change: A study of organisational
renewal in government, (Washington, 2005) Back
This is an idea which is built on by Charles Clarke who describes
the need to engage "advocates for change" in the public
services (Charles Clarke MP, Effective Governance and the Role
of Public Service, p.135) Back
Paul Dutton, associate professor of history at Northern Arizona
University, highlighted the French model in Differential Diagnoses:
A Comparative History of Health Care Problems and Solutions in
the United States and France (New York, 2007). He wrote an
article for the Herald Tribune summarising his position here http://www.iht.com/articles/2007/08/13/opinion/eddutton.php.
Also see the following article in Business week http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/07_28/b4042070.htm Back
According to a Civitas report (http://www.civitas.org.uk/pdf/cs17.pdf),
65% of beds are provided by state hospitals, 20% by for-profit
hospitals and 15% by not-for-profit hospitals. Back
Mossialos, E., Citizens' views on health systems in the 15 member
states of the European Union, Health Economics, Vol. 6, pp. 109-16,
and Eurobarometer survey (1997). Back
Jabubowski, E., Health Care Systems in the EU: A Comparative Study,
E. P. Working Paper, SACO 101/rev. EN, EuropeanParliament (1998.) Back
Details of various reforms detailed here http://www.lse.ac.uk/collections/LSEHealth/pdf/eurohealth/vol12no3.pdf Back
Tim Besley, Political Institutions and Policy Competition,
(London, 2005) http://econ.lse.ac.uk/staff/tbesley/papers/policycomp1.pdf Back
Robert Behn, Rethinking democratic accountability, (Washington,
2001), p.42 Back
Michael Barber, Instruction to Deliver, Fighting to Transform
Britain's Public Services (London, 2007) passim Back
Evidence established in Keith Mackay, How to build monitoring
and evaluation systems to support better government, (World
Bank, 2007), chapter 8. See http://www.worldbank.org/ieg/ecd/docs/How_to_build_ME_gov.pdf.
The report also highlights the OMB's PART assessment tool as an
example of good practice Back
Douglas Jay, The Socialist Case (London, 1947), p.258-although
Jay wrote this specifically for the cases of nutrition, health
and education, with his general conclusion on the "gentleman
in Whitehall" being exactly the opposite. Back
This is a finding echoed by Ed Straw in the 2004 Demos
pamphlet http://www.demos.co.uk/publications/deadgen Back
The Welsh assembly, for example, has scrapped national curriculum
tests for 11 and 14 year olds but they remain in England. Back