Trust Building in PPPs for Service Delivery: A Difficult and Complex Task for Boundary Spanners

Christiane Schulze

    Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperResearch


    Trust has been identified to be a crucial mechanism for creating performance and positive outcomes in inter-organizational relations. Distrust on the other hand has been related to a number of negative outcomes. Yet, this subject remains under-illuminated in public-private partnerships although it has been shown that also here trust relates positively with positive outcomes. Given the impact of trust and distrust on partnership outcome, the question imposes itself of how trust and distrust evolve, a puzzle which is addressed in this paper. The analysis of two in depth studies of PPPs for service delivery in Denmark leads to two main findings. First, despite the existence of rather formalized procedures trust based on the perception of the other managers’ competence is already important before the contract is entered. Second, this trust is not automatically transferred onto the next hierarchical level, being the middle managers who span boundaries during the contract stage. Consequently it should not be taken as a matter of course, but more focus should be devoted on the transition from the pre-contract to the contract stage. Not least, boundary spanners during the latter stage should be matched more conscious as to create a platform for trusting relationships.
    Original languageEnglish
    Publication date2013
    Number of pages33
    Publication statusPublished - 2013
    EventPublic-Private Partnership Conference Series CBS-Sauder-Monash 2013 - Sauder School of Business, The University of British Columbia Vancouver, BC , Vancouver, Canada
    Duration: 13 Jun 201314 Jun 2013
    Conference number: 2


    ConferencePublic-Private Partnership Conference Series CBS-Sauder-Monash 2013
    LocationSauder School of Business, The University of British Columbia Vancouver, BC
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