Public Services Choices When There Are No Alternatives?: A Paradox of New Public Management in Rural Areas
2012 (English)In: Journal of Rural and Community Development, ISSN 1712-8277, Vol. 7, no 2, 1-17 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
There is a common decrease in services in rural areas around the world. This is not at least the case regarding public services, since the decreasing population also decreases the resources available for local public services. The aim of this article is to critically analyse challenges of New Public Management in a rural area community in Sweden to discuss the complex double management role (as employer and as service provider) of the rural municipality. The core of NPM is based on a private sector ethos and is thus also heavily influenced by corporate sector techniques and management. In this paradigm cost effectiveness and efficiency become the dominant considerations for how the state is run. It becomes even more problematic in rural areas without a critical mass of customers (former citizens) and additional costs for transportation. This is illustrated by a discussion of local schools. The analysis shows that even non-monetary resources should be taken into account to reach legitimate policy changes in rural communities. This opens for a creative discussion on time-spatial localized policy-making including extending the interpretations of local resources.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. Vol. 7, no 2, 1-17 p.
Rural Municipalities, education, New Public Management (NPM), Sweden
Public Administration Studies
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-80256OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-80256DiVA: diva2:546323