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Municipal Performance Measurement and Management in Practice: Which Factors Matter?

PAQ, Vol. 34 No. 4, (2010)

Performance management systems (PMSs) are being increasingly implemented in public sector organizations, although it is usually argued that a gap exists between the intended and the actual results. The purpose of this paper is to understand the factors that affect the use and implementation of PMSs in municipalities and how these drivers could influence their effectiveness. A multiple case study approach is used with extensive document analysis and direct interviews in four municipalities (two in Spain and two in Italy) that have implemented effective PMSs. Findings provide evidence of the factors that play a role in the implementation of these systems. In particular, time related concepts–duration, paths, windows of opportunity, cycles, causal mechanisms, and multiple perspectives–help to understand the time related factors which have a positive impact on final configuration of PMS.

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