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Home » Programme Findings » Evidence from the Comparison of Public Service Performance

A special issue of Evaluation: The International Journal of Theory, Research and Practice, Vol. 16, No. 1, 2010

The latest Programme special issue, co-edited by Deborah Wilson, Programme Deputy Director, and Oliver James, Programme Fellow focuses on analysing systems in and beyond the UK for the comparison of public service performance,  considering the strengths and limitations of this method. Christopher Pollit and colleagues compare English and Dutch approaches to performance incentives in health care over a quarter of a century. Steve Martin and colleagues turn their attention to the assessment of local authorities in England, Scotland and Wales, comparing different approaches taken by inspectors to reviewing organizational effectiveness.  Differing regimes in England, Scotland and Wales have been further compared by Tim Blackman and team in a study on how health inequalities are framed for intervention by performance assessment systems. Tackling another angle, performance measurement systems in social care, Paul Clarkson and colleagues compare England’s top down system of standards and measures with that of Northern Ireland, a system without national targets and, further afield, Japan where information is gathered locally in a bottom up fashion. Lastly, Nigel Rice and colleagues paper is concerned with comparative inference derived from surveys of individual users, using data from 17 EU countries in the World Health Survey.