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Connecting knowledge and performance in public services: From knowing to doing

Edited by Kieran Walshe, Gill Harvey and Pauline Jas

With an introduction by Christopher Hood, this major Programme publication will be published in 2010 by Cambridge University Press.

The performance of public services is now more closely scrutinised than ever before. Every teacher, doctor, social worker or probation officer knows that behind them stands a restless army of overseers, equipped with a panoply of league tables, star ratings, user opinion surveys, performance indicators and the like with which to judge them. This increased scrutiny and performance measurement has undoubtedly produced improved public services. Yet we still have a limited understanding about how this information can be best used to bring about improvements in performance. What goes on inside the ‘black box’ of public organisations to move from information to action, or from ‘knowing’ to ‘doing’? This book tackles this important question by reviewing a wide range of performance mechanisms. It explores how information about performance can be translated into improvements in services and, conversely, why this does not always happen in practice.

Contributors from the Programme include Christopher Hood, Kieran Walshe, Gill Harvey, Pauline Jas, Steve Martin, Steven Van de Walle, Carol Propper, Deborah Wilson, George Boyne, Oliver James, Peter John, Nicolai Petrovsky, Sandra Nutley, Chris Skelcher, and Colin Talbot.

Further details can be found here.