T07P14 - Policy Evaluation in Performance Regimes: A Comparative Perspective

Topic : Policy Design, Policy Analysis, Expertise and Evaluation

Panel Chair : Liang Ma - ken0821@gmail.com

Objectives and Scientific Relevance of the panel

Given the cutback and austerity of public finance around the world, governments are required by the public to improve policy performance. Public policies in various domains have been increasingly subject to external scrutiny and public accountability to retain social legitimacy and citizen trust. Public money is strictly supervised in developed democracies, and public projects and programs are also under similar control in less developed countries, either democratic or authoritarian. Policies and programs are not only evaluated in traditional mandatory and top down approach, but are also monitored by external and third-party entities including community groups, media, non-profit organizations, research institutions, and international organizations.

Policy evaluation is not isolated, but rather embedded in institutional contexts. In this regard, it is imperative to examine policy evaluation in performance regimes, which “refer not just to the practices of measuring and managing performance indicators but also to capture the embedded nature of these practices in almost all aspects of contemporary governance.” (Moynihan, et al., 2011: i141). The conflict values and goals, blurring boundaries and hybrid forms of organizing, as well as increasingly complicated and multiplied policy problems, make it methodologically challenging to measure and manage policy performance. Government agencies, private sectors, and non-profit organizations involved in policy implementation also strategically respond to performance regimes, which result in gaming, cheating, manipulation, goal displacement, and other unintended consequences.

Despite policy evaluation is performance-oriented and result-centric, public sectors in different countries and regions have developed distinct approaches due to different cultural, political, and social contexts. These approaches are rather different, but may share similar underpinning values and rationales. It is thus meaningful to examine and compare policy evaluations in different countries and regions. In this proposed panel, we call for submissions studying policy evaluation in performance regimes from a comparative perspective. Key research questions include: How do performance regimes affect policy evaluation approaches and instruments? What role do third-party entities play in policy evaluation? What policy experts can learn from policy evaluation practices in other countries and regions? In this proposed panel, we aim to gather the scholars in this field to exchange ideas and evidences concerning policy evaluation in different performance regimes across the world.

Call for papers

 

Policy evaluation varies across policy regimes, and it is promising to examine the intertwining relationships between policy evaluation practices and performance regimes. In this proposed panel, we aim to gather the scholars in this field to exchange ideas and evidences concerning policy evaluation in different performance regimes across the world. Theoretical/conceptual, methodological, and empirical studies are all welcomed, and both quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods are invited. Topics include but not limited to:

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