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Media statement

Paper examines developments in public sector management

Issue date: 
Friday, 4 May 2012
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The Treasury has published a Working Paper which examines the findings of research into international developments in the economic theory of the firm, and its implications for public sector organisation, in the quarter of a century since New Zealand adopted significant public sector reforms. The paper is a survey of international academic literature on the issues.  It was written by Lewis Evans, Graeme Guthrie, Professors in the School of Economics and Finance, and Professor Neil Quigley, Deputy Vice Chancellor (Research), at Victoria University in Wellington.

It is a stock-take on changes in practice and in theory since the 1980s and ponders what New Zealand might potentially learn from those developments as the country considers how to strengthen public management practices, and publicly-funded services provided to New Zealanders.

A key issue for the public sector in New Zealand is the need to generate greater coordination between public-sector agencies. Much of the literature addressing the issue of coordination looks into the benefits and drawbacks of a more, or less, centralised approach to decision-making rights both within organisations, and across the public sector and why.

Treasury Working Papers express the conclusions and opinions of authors, not the Treasury.

Contemporary Microeconomic Foundations for the Structure and Management of the Public Sector is available on the Treasury’s website at:

Media contact:

Professor Neil Quigley | Deputy Vice Chancellor (Research), Victoria University in Wellington
Tel: +64 4 463 5083
Mob: +64 (0)29 463 5083
Last updated: 
Friday, 4 May 2012