Implementation and the Policy Process: Opening Up the Black Box

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During the past two decades public policy analysis has focused on the role of implementation as a distinct phenomenon in the creation of policy output. More recently, implementation researchers have called for a major reevaluation of the process of policy formation itself. This book presents an overview of why implementation research has contributed to this major reconsideration and offers conceptual frameworks that employ implementation research to develop a fuller understanding of the entire policy process. It attempts to narrow the divide between the assumptions of the earlier and later implementation researchers. The contributors to this book aim at clarifying the relationship between implementation research and public policy analysis. They caution against the error of assuming that implementation is the main factor in policy making and that once implementation is taken care of, policies will be effective. They attempt to place implementation in the broader policy making process and show its relationship to the other parts of the policy cycle. Additionally, several of the contributors develop explanatory models that cut across the research dichotomies of the prevailing top-down and bottom-up approaches and establish an agenda for future research.

The book is divided into three parts; within each the chapters are organized by questions that move from the more empirical to more methodological and theoretical concerns. The chapters in the first section deal with policy design issues and empirical aspects of implementation research. Those in part two present implementation's special contribution to the policy field, discussing how policy implementation adapts to changing organizational, intergovernmental, and ideological circumstances. The generalizations made by the authors focus on the contribution implementation research makes to understanding the entire policy process. The final section includes chapters that capture and extend the observations of the other contributors. These essays also develop generalizations and suggest various lines of future research. The final chapter both summarizes implementation's contributions and proposes an interpretive model that will forward future research. This comprehensive work can be used in courses on public policy and administration, and social welfare.

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Product Details

Meet the Author

DENNNIS J. PALUMBO is Regents Professor of Justice Studies, Political Science and Director of the Ph.D. program in the school of Justice Studies at Arizona State University.

DONALD J. CALISTA is Director of the Graduate Center for Public Policy and Administration at Marist College.

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Table of Contents

Introduction: The Relation of Implementation Research to Policy Outcomes by Dennis J. Palumbo and Donald J. Calista

Implementation and Policy Design

Opening Up the Black Box: Implementation and the Policy-Making Process by Dennis J. Palumbo and Donald J. Calista

Integrating Implementation Research by Soren Winter

When Failure Is Success: Implementation and Madisonian Government by Barbara Ferman

Research Perspectives on the Design of Public Policy: Implementation, Formulation, and Design by Stephen H. Linder and B. Guy Peters

The Japan External Trade Organization and Import Promotion: A Case Study in the Implementation of Symbolic Policy Goals by Robert T. Nakamura

Implementation Politics and the Organization Context

Implementation and Managerial Creativity: A Study of the Development of Client-Centered Units in Human Service Programs by Glenn W. Rainey, Jr.

Implementation as Policy Politics by Evelyn Z. Brodkin

Female Executives in Public and Private Universities: Differences in Implementation Styles by Bryna Sanger and Martin A. Levin

Policy Implementation and the Responsible Exercise of Discretion by John P. Burke

Acquisition: The Missing Link in the Implementation of Technology by Carl P. Carlucci

Epistemology, Methodology, and Implementation

Studying Micro- Implementation Empirically: Lessons and Dilemmas by Mary Ann Scheirer and James Griffith

Studying the Dynamics of Public Policy Implementation: A Third-Generation Approach by Malcolm L. Goggin, Ann O'M. Bowman, James P. Lester, and Laurence J. O'Toole, Jr.

Implementation Research: Why and How to Transcend Positivist Methodologies by Charles J.Fox

Tackling the Implementation Problem: Epistemological Issues in Implementation Research by Dvora Yanow



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