Wednesday, March 19, 2008

New Public Management vs New Public Service

Cornell website points to New Public Service as a response to New Public Management. Note that the discussion takes place under the heading of "Restructuring Local Government."

NPS is a direct reaction to NPM from authors Janet and Robert Denhardt, who "offer a synthesis of the ideas that are opposed to the New Public Management" in their 2002 book The New Public Service (Cornell says 2003; see also 2007 edition)

Seven principles of NPS (quoted from Cornell web):

  1. Serve citizens, not customers
  2. Seek the public interest
  3. Value citizenship over entrepreneurship
  4. Think strategically, act democratically (In comparison to Osborne and Gaebler, Denhardt and Denhardt assert that there is a difference between “thinking strategically” and “entrepreneurial government.”)
  5. Recognize that accountability is not simple
  6. Serve rather than steer (This involves listening to the real needs of the people and the community, not just responding in the manner that a business would to a customer.)
  7. Value people, not just productivity

The Denhardts see public administrators as more than managers doing cost-benefit analysis. Administrators are participants, just like citizens:

The public manager’s job is not only, or simply, to make policy choices and implement them. It is also to participate in a system of democratic governance in which public values are continuously rearticulated and recreated (Reich 1988, 123-24, quoted in D&D 96).

Note that NPS sounds less well developed than NPM; shorter bib, at least, on Cornell site.

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