The Impact of Red Tape on Governmental Performance: An Empirical Analysis

Posted: 28 Dec 2009

See all articles by Gene A. Brewer

Gene A. Brewer

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Richard M. Walker

The University of Hong Kong

Date Written: January 2010

Abstract

This study investigates the impact of red tape on governmental performance in the context of English local government. Both the red tape and performance constructs are multidimensional, so relationships between the concepts and their several dimensions are examined in detail. The results show that different types of red tape have varying impacts on governmental performance but that these effects are somewhat weaker than public management theory and conventional wisdom suggest. Moreover, some types of red tape affect some dimensions of performance in surprising ways. For example, internal red tape has limited effects on efficiency but inflicts considerable damage on equity. The results also show that red tape is a subject-dependent concept-known in the literature as stakeholder red tape. We contend that this alternative conceptualization of red tape opens new vistas for understanding the concept and should be explored further. The implications for public management research and practice are discussed.

Suggested Citation

Brewer, Gene A. and Walker, Richard Mark, The Impact of Red Tape on Governmental Performance: An Empirical Analysis (January 2010). Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, Vol. 20, Issue 1, pp. 233-257, 2010. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1528343 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jopart/mun040

Gene A. Brewer (Contact Author)

affiliation not provided to SSRN

No Address Available

Richard Mark Walker

The University of Hong Kong ( email )

Pokfulam Road
Hong Kong, HK
China

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