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Replication or Innovation? Structuration in Policy Implementation

EasyChair Preprint no. 1084

33 pagesDate: June 4, 2019


Why does a program, policy, or management approach implemented with success in one jurisdiction or organization fail to achieve similar results in another context? There is a large body of literature in public affairs and related fields that wrestle with this question. Scholars place varying emphasis on the constraints of the institutional system relative to humans’ agency in bringing about successful outcomes, and there is a tendency to generate lists of factors that enable or impede successful implementation. In this manuscript, we present an alternative theoretical approach grounded in structuration processes. We turn to recent empirical scholarship and theory to re-examine what is known about tools often used to try and influence the implementation process: rules, routines, culture, and resources. This literature emphasizes that the work of these mechanisms are fundamentally shaped by endogenous factors within a system, fueled by the agency of actors within the setting. This is
a more robust way to understand how micro dynamics shape meso conditions in organizations and networks. Rather than understanding the implementation puzzle as how to replicate effective ideas, this frame suggests more attention to how to support innovation and learning is warranted.

Keyphrases: policy implementation, Public Management, Replication

BibTeX entry
BibTeX does not have the right entry for preprints. This is a hack for producing the correct reference:
  author = {Jodi Sandfort and Stephanie Moulton},
  title = {Replication or Innovation? Structuration in Policy Implementation},
  howpublished = {EasyChair Preprint no. 1084},

  year = {EasyChair, 2019}}
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