Managing Under Austerity, Delivering Under Pressure

Managing Under Austerity, Delivering Under Pressure

Performance and Productivity in Public Service

Edited by: John Wanna orcid, Hsu-Ann Lee, Sophie Yates

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Contemporary public managers find themselves under pressure on many fronts. Coming off a sustained period of growth in their funding and some complacency about their performance, they now face an environment of ferocious competitiveness abroad and austerity at home. Public managers across Australia and New Zealand are finding themselves wrestling with expenditure reduction, a smaller public sector overall, sustained demands for productivity improvement, and the imperative to think differently about the optimal distribution of responsibilities between states, markets and citizens.

Given ever-shrinking resources, in terms of staffing, budgets and time, how can public managers and public services become more productive, more outcome-driven and more agile? How can we achieve better alignment between ever-growing citizen expectations and the realities of constrained service provision? What can we learn from the best combination of innovation and austerity already being delivered in other countries and sectors, including harnessing the grounded wisdom of frontline service delivery practitioners?

This book focuses on practical ways public managers at home and abroad are dealing with these shared dilemmas. It brings together renowned scholars in the fields of public sector productivity, performance management, ‘frugal innovation’ and budget stringency, with leading international and Australasian practitioners sharing their successes and challenges.

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Managing Under Austerity, Delivering Under Pressure »

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Part one: The imperative to improve productivity and performance

  1. Delivering under pressure: Public service, productivity and performance (PDF, 162KB) – John Wanna doi
  2. Getting leaner, smarter and more effective: Opportunities and constraints for governments under austerity (PDF, 167KB) – Doug McTaggart doi
  3. Public sector productivity: Puzzles, conundrums, dilemmas and their solutions (PDF, 811KB) – Patrick Dunleavy doi
  4. Measuring and improving government performance: Learning from recent US experience (PDF, 300KB) – Shelley H. Metzenbaum doi
  5. Performance management: Creating high performance, not high anxiety (PDF, 545KB) – Deborah Blackman, Damian West, Janine O’Flynn, Fiona Buick and Michael O’Donnell doi
  6. Reviewing performance to improve delivery: Key insights from two auditors‑general (PDF, 261KB) – Andrew Greaves and Peter Achterstraat doi

Part two: The need for governments to innovate

  1. Innovation in the public sector: Beyond the rhetoric to a genuine ‘learning culture’ (PDF, 170KB) – Andrew Podger doi
  2. Unleashing change in government (PDF, 154KB) – Steven J. Kelman doi
  3. Eight-and-a-half propositions to stimulate frugal innovation in public services (PDF, 185KB) – Jean Hartley doi
  4. Strategic advice to the public service facing austerity (PDF, 149KB) – Paul McClintock doi
  5. Can ‘nudging’ change behaviour? Using ‘behavioural insights’ to improve program redesign (PDF, 248KB) – David Halpern and Rory Gallagher doi

Part three: Collaboration with the private and third sectors

  1. Frugal innovation: Beyond the concepts of ‘public’ and ‘private’ (PDF, 588KB) – Gary Sturgess doi
  2. The road to genuine partnerships with the third sector: Are we there yet? (PDF, 163KB) – Peter Shergold doi
  3. Developing social benefit bonds in Australia: The NSW Family and Community Services experience (PDF, 291KB) –Simone Walker doi
  4. Situating mutuals in the Australian public sector context (PDF, 163KB) – Les Hems doi

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