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Is the ability of politicians to act as representatives between elections hampered in systems inspired by NPM?

Journal article
Authors Vicki Johansson
Published in Urban Research and Practice
Volume 12
Issue 3
Pages 264-284
ISSN 1753-5069
Publication year 2019
Published at School of Public Administration
Pages 264-284
Language en
Keywords new (Normal) public management; performance management; representative democracy; deliberative processes; municipal managers; local politicians
Subject categories Public Administration Studies, Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalization Studies)


In this article, I explore and analyse how the application of systems inspired by New (Normal) Public Management affects the capacity of politicians to act on behalf of the people. The aim is to acquire new knowledge about how output-based financial and performance measurement systems affect the form and content of deliberative processes between elections. The analysis is based on an extensive empirical process, both backwards and forwards in time, tracing analysis of a critical event that occurred within education policy in a Swedish municipality. One main hypothesis generated is that NPM-inspired systems have a negative effect on deliberations between elections in ways that generate lock-in effects that hamper the ability of politicians to act as representatives between elections.

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Utskriftsdatum: 2020-08-10