“New Public Management”
The most striking international trend in public management is rising of NPM (New Public Management). NPM’s rise seems to be linked with four other administrative “megatrends”: attempts of reverse government growth in terms of overt public spending, shift towards privatization and away from core government institutions, development of automation, particularly in IT and development of a more international agenda, increasingly focused on general issues of public administration.
What are the main doctrines of NPM? Different commentators and advocates of NPM stressed different aspects of doctrine. But the most overlapping precepts in most discussion of NPM are: “hands-on professional management” in public sector, explicit standards and measures of performance, greater emphasize on output controls, shift to disaggregation of units in public sector, shift to greater competition on public sector, stress on private sector styles of management practice and stress on greater discipline.
One way to interpret the NPM’s origin is as marriage of two different streams of ideas. One partner was “new institutional economics” movement. It helped to generate a set of administrative reform doctrines built on ideas of contestability, user choice, transparency and close concentration on incentive structures. Those doctrines were very different from traditional military-bureaucratic ideas of “good administration”. The other partner in the 'marriage' was the latest of a set of successive waves of business-type managerialism in the public sector, in the tradition of the international scientific management movement. ). This movement helped to generate a set of administrative reform doctrines based on the ideas of 'professional management'. Whether the two partners in this union are fully compatible remains a question.
There is no single accepted explanation or interpretation of why NPM '”caught on”. It was four possible explanations, only...
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