Serving many masters: public accountability in private policy implementation

Thomann, Eva; Hupe, Peter; Sager, Fritz (2017). Serving many masters: public accountability in private policy implementation. Governance, 31(2), pp. 299-319. Blackwell 10.1111/gove.12297

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In recent decades, the introduction of market principles has
transformed public service delivery into a hybrid. However,
little is known about how these changes are reflected in the
attitudes of private implementing agents: The hybridization
literature neglects individuals, and street-level bureaucracy
research has disregarded hybridization. This article extends
Hupe and Hill’s (2007) accountability regimes framework to
introduce the market as an additional accountability regime
alongside state, profession, and society. Using a configura-
tional approach, the article explores how public and private
food safety inspectors in Switzerland perceive the multiple
norms for behavior stemming from their environment.
Results suggest that the plural accountabilities of for-profit
street-level bureaucrats can increase the dilemmas involved
in their work. Under certain circumstances, for-profit street-
level bureaucrats have particular difficulties reconciling rule
pressure with market incentives and client demands. The
extended accountability regimes framework fruitfully cap-
tures such dilemmas and helps identify suitable governance
responses.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

11 Centers of Competence > KPM Center for Public Management

UniBE Contributor:

Thomann, Eva and Sager, Fritz

Subjects:

300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology > 330 Economics
300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology > 350 Public administration & military science
600 Technology > 650 Management & public relations

ISSN:

1468-0491

Publisher:

Blackwell

Language:

English

Submitter:

Deborah Anna Fritzsche

Date Deposited:

23 Mar 2018 11:14

Last Modified:

23 Oct 2019 22:37

Publisher DOI:

10.1111/gove.12297

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.113159

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/113159

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