Whatever Happened to New Public Management?

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    This paper aims to take stock of the concept of New Public Management (NPM) to see what has happened with the concept, and to consider recent concepts and ideas that challenge NPM. The reason is that there is still much talk about NPM, although many now seem to think that we have gone “beyond” NPM or are in a “post-NPM” public management situation. The second part of the paper will deal with self-styled conceptual alternatives to NPM. These began to appear in the last decade. With “self-styled” I mean that they explicitly present themselves as alternatives to NPM and address the shortcomings in NPM to promote other conceptualizations. Combined, these alternatives approach a coherent research agenda. To be able to discuss these matters, the argument is presented through a theoretical approach that views public management reform as institutional change. This approach is now common in public management reform studies (Pollitt & Bouckaert 2004; Christensen & Lægreid, 2001, 2007, 2011), Knill (1999) and Barzelay (2001) and colleagues (Barzelay & Gallego 2010). The analytical framework comes from theories of public policymaking and theories of historical institutionalism in political science.
    Original languageEnglish
    Publication date2010
    Number of pages20
    Publication statusPublished - 2010
    EventDanish Political Science Association Annual Meeting 2010 - Vejle, Denmark
    Duration: 4 Nov 20105 Nov 2010


    ConferenceDanish Political Science Association Annual Meeting 2010

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