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Kommunala huvudmannastrategier för kostnadspress och utveckling : en studie av kommunal teknik

by Mattisson, Ola, PhD

Abstract (Summary)
The aim of the study is to improve the understanding of strategy in politically governed organisations. From the perspective of a specific responsible authority the main purpose of the study is to describe and analyse how strategies emerge and develop. Competitive tendering and inter-municipal co-operation, has been studied as a two principally different strategic approaches to reduce costs and stimulate innovation in the municipal engineering sector. By combining two different theoretical traditions, general strategy theory and political science approaches for public administration, I have developed a conceptual framework that permits the use of the strategy concept in a context of political organisations. According to the framework, it is possible to identify three types of actors within the responsible municipal authority. Each of these is characterised by a specific logic. Political actors act for political purposes, professional actors act for professional purposes and occurring private contractors act for commercial purposes. The three different types of logic are recognised to have a major impact on the emerging strategy within a supply. By confronting the theoretical framework with the empirical data, conclusions concerning the content and application of the strategies of municipal authorities are generated. Traditionally, strategy in political organisations has been considered a matter for hired professionals. By regarding political demands as an external factor, strategy is used as a means to treat and handle the governing effort of elected politicians. This situation is regrettable in view of the arguments for democracy put forward by political scientists. The thesis’ suggested framework casts political actors and professionals in the roles of initiators of strategic approaches. The emergent and realised strategy is a matter of political and professional judgement in interplay with occurring external contractors, thus strategy does not function as a filter between political decisions and implementing executives. Strategy supposedly emerges as the result of actions initiated by the three types of actors. Outcomes vary depending on the actor who’s rationality dominates each specific situation. In the study three hypotheses are presented. Depending on the type of actor, strategic reflection will appear in different arenas. Which problems and solutions appear urgent and interesting will depend on which actor’s perspective we chose to take our starting point in. Finally, most strategy studies of public organisations assume a public production unit. When initiated strategic approaches (politicians and executives) are analytically separated ex ante, a discussion in terms of strategy becomes meaningful, no matter how the production is provided.
Bibliographical Information:

Advisor:

School:Lunds universitet

School Location:Sweden

Source Type:Doctoral Dissertation

Keywords:SOCIAL SCIENCES; Business and economics; strategy; municipal engineering; Municipal responsible authority; process; competitive tendering; co-operation; innovation; cost reduction; Management of enterprises; Företagsledning; management

ISBN:91-973738-4-2

Date of Publication:01/01/2000

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