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Title: A practical framework for achieving targets in payment by results provision : a case study of the National Troubled Families Initiative
Author: Johnstone, Laura
ISNI:       0000 0004 6499 7655
Awarding Body: University of Sunderland
Current Institution: University of Sunderland
Date of Award: 2017
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Payment by Results (PbR) is increasingly popular. £15B-worth of schemes in the UK public sector had a PbR element (National Audit Office 2015) and Payment by Results is widely used in the United States and Australia (Webster 2015). Despite this, there is no framework for target achievement in PbR to guide principals, agents and other stakeholders. In my experience at a local level, this omission means that Payment by Results does not automatically lead to success. The research project explored how to develop a practical framework, rooted in business and management literature, for the effective implementation of PbR programmes in the public sector. The three research objectives of a better understanding of the National Troubled Families Initiative’s geographic and socioeconomic context and target cohort and how success can be achieved both in the programme and in Payment by Results provision contributed to this. The key Payment by Results literature was reviewed with the theoretical framework of Stakeholder Theory and Agency Theory. The case study methodology then reviewed the National Troubled Families Initiative – an eight-year Payment by Results programme launched in England as a response to the 2011 English disturbances - to identify the gaps in the PbR literature and successful provision from the UK and US was then presented as a benchmark of good practice. In order to provide empirical content and support to the framework, I used a pragmatic research philosophy, which was further along the continuum of interpretivism than positivism. Mixed methods mainly influenced by qualitative data analysis led to the ethical qualitative analysis of Phase One secondary quantitative data from the Department of Communities and Local Government – the ‘Troubled Families’ principal – and one agent from the North-East of England to identify key themes and relationships. These were then explored further by ethically gathering primary qualitative data from key stakeholders from another Northeast city, a Southeast county and a Northwest consortium of authorities. This data was then analysed using thematic narrative analysis and thematic analysis. 8 The research findings expanded upon the guidelines for principals considering commissioning Payment by Results provision (National Audit Office 2015) and the six elements of an effective outcome (Webster 2016). They provided a new, sevenstage practical framework for achieving targets in Payment by Results provision. This incorporated best practice guidelines for stakeholder analysis, principal identification, agent identification and the establishment of an Expert Body and incorporated a practical process for successful strategy and operations implementation, delivery, data collection and analysis, and findings and action. The framework can be applied to all types of PbR provision across the public sector. This is something, which renders the research project extremely commercially attractive. The PbR framework will better use scant resources, reduce wastage, generate efficiencies, create additional jobs, return work from the private to the public sector and provide the public sector with a model, which they can market and sell to other providers. It therefore creates a win-win situation for key stakeholders including the principal, the agent, the service users and the taxpayer. Recommendations were also provided to achieve the requisite performance in Phase Two of the National Troubled Families Initiative in Local Authority One and across England.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Business and Management