How is Information Used to Improve Performance in the Public Sector? Exploring the Dynamics of Performance Information

CONNECTING KNOWLEDGE AND PERFORMANCE IN PUBLIC SERVICES: FROM KNOWING TO DOING, Walshe, K., Harvey, G. & Jas, P. eds., 2010

26 Pages Posted: 24 Oct 2009

See all articles by Steven Van de Walle

Steven Van de Walle

KU Leuven - Department of Political Science; Erasmus University Rotterdam - Department of Public Administration

Wouter van Dooren

Catholic University of Leuven (KUL) - Public Management Institute

Date Written: October 20, 2009

Abstract

In this chapter, we challenge the assumption of a direct relationship between the existence and availability of information, and its use in decisions. We will do so by integrating three different sets of literature. Other chapters in this book stress organisations’ capacities and capabilities to produce a turnaround, or refer to contextual factors that make a turnaround difficult. Our basic argument is that the fact that information exists does not mean it will also be used by those in charge. A first set of arguments comes from a somewhat more recent field of study looking at the actual use of performance information by decision makers in the public sector (Van Dooren & Van de Walle, 2008). The second part will focus on structural and organisational factors that may facilitate or complicate the diffusion of information through an organisation. The third part will briefly introduce psychological factors that make that certain pieces of information are excluded from consideration in decision making. We will subsequently integrate this information and distil the major trends. We end by discussing the implication of our findings on public organisations’ ability to connect knowledge to performance.

Keywords: performance information, public sector

JEL Classification: D8, D73

Suggested Citation

Van de Walle, Steven and van Dooren, Wouter, How is Information Used to Improve Performance in the Public Sector? Exploring the Dynamics of Performance Information (October 20, 2009). CONNECTING KNOWLEDGE AND PERFORMANCE IN PUBLIC SERVICES: FROM KNOWING TO DOING, Walshe, K., Harvey, G. & Jas, P. eds., 2010. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1491644 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1491644

Steven Van de Walle (Contact Author)

KU Leuven - Department of Political Science ( email )

Public Management Institute
Van Evenstraat 2A
B-3000 Leuven
Belgium
+32 16 323614 (Phone)
+32 16 323611 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.publicmanagementinstitute.be

Erasmus University Rotterdam - Department of Public Administration ( email )

3000 DR Rotterdam
Netherlands
0031 10 408 2518 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.stevenvandewalle.eu

Wouter Van Dooren

Catholic University of Leuven (KUL) - Public Management Institute ( email )

Oude Markt 13
Leuven, Vlaams-Brabant
Belgium

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