The Impact of Greater Autonomy on Efficiency of Work and Quality of Services in Public Service Providers: A Case of Vocational Education Institutions
affiliation not provided to SSRN
Annals of Public and Cooperative Economics, Vol. 82, Issue 4, pp. 475-494, 2011
The paper analyses impact of greater autonomy on efficiency of work and quality of services in public service institutions. Autonomy is one of the key principles of New Public Management that, according to the theory, increases performance in public service providers. However this assumption has been scarcely researched in practice. To narrow this gap, the experimental reform that implemented greater managerial and financial autonomy in 13 Lithuanian state vocational schools was chosen for research. In order to analyse the impact of autonomy after the reform, maximally similar institutions (those that underwent the reform and that did not) are compared using quantitative (incl. counterfactual analysis) and qualitative methods. The results indicate that institutions that have been reformed tend to have better efficiency and quality of services, even though this relationship is not causal. Moreover, the research challenges the notion that such results came from greater autonomy. Finally, the logic of the NPM of as to why more autonomous institutions perform better is also challenged.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 20
Keywords: Autonomy, New Public Management, vocational education and training, public non‐profit institution, budgetary institution, efficiency of work, quality of services
JEL Classification: L3, I2Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: November 21, 2011
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