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Title: Implementing new public management reforms in Ghana: Institutional constraints and capacity issues: cases from Public health and water services
Author: Larbi, George Addo
ISNI:       0000 0001 2448 3375
Awarding Body: The University of Birmingham
Current Institution: University of Birmingham
Date of Award: 1998
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New Public Management has become an accepted term in the public administration and management literature, and the reforms it describes are increasingly being advocated in developing countries. This thesis examines the institutional constraints and capacity issues in introducing and implementing downsizing, decentralised management, performance contracting and contracting-out as instances of new public management reforms in health and water services in Ghana. The central argument of the thesis is that reformers tend to overemphasise issues of what to implement and underemphasise issues of how to implement and, in the process, tend to overlook contextual and institutional factors that may affect implementation. It uses data from in-depth and semi-structured interviews, varieties of documentary sources and direct observations, and adopts a multi-theoretical framework which draws upon implementation and principal-agent theories. The study provides evidence to show that, except for downsizing, new public management reform is still embryonic and fragile, yet to be consolidated. Within the limited progress made in implementation, however, there is evidence that the structural components of the reforms have advanced more than the operational aspects. Health has made more progress in decentralisation than the water organisation, whilst the latter is ahead in downsizing and performance contracting. It further shows that systemic, governance-grounded constraints are more binding on capacity to implement and manage reforms. The introduction and implementation of new management reforms need to take account of the operational reality and context of the public services in Ghana. Implementation needs to be managed and cannot be taken for granted.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available