Explaining State Government Administrative Reform: Fosucing on Performance-Based Budgeting and State Executive Branch Reorganization
Park, Chang-Soo (author)
Chackerian, Richard (professor directing dissertation)
Berry, William D. (outside committee member)
Brower, Ralph (committee member)
Feiock, Richard C. (committee member)
School of Public Administration and Policy (degree granting department)
Florida State University (degree granting institution)
What are the causes of administrative reform? Even though the question is critical in understanding administrative reform efforts and their impacts on administration and society, much remains to be understood about this process. In this dissertation, I will examine the following research question : What accounts for the occurrence of two types of state-level administrative reform - the adoption of performance-based budgeting legislation and comprehensive state executive branch reorganization ? I focus on these reforms because they are core administrative reform processes. More importantly, the examination of two reforms within a single study provides an opportunity to examine the differences in the adoption prospects and process (Chackerian and Mavima, 2001). Administrative reform matters. Government structural reorganization has been used to cope with rising fiscal stress, the lack of managerial control over state bureaucracies (Franklin, 2000; Gortner, Mabler, & Nicholson, 1997; Meier,1980), and is not infrequently part of the political rhetoric in campaigns (Garnet 1980; Chackerian 1996). Budget reform also has been used to cope with economic and fiscal pressures, citizen demands for better program outcomes and low taxes (Berry, Brower, & Flowers, 2000). Administrative arrangements are crucial since they affect "who gets what" and the flow of costs and benefits over time. They have distributional consequences among interested actors (Feiock & Stream, 1998). My framework attempts to integrate the micro level political market approach with macro perspectives that point to the importance of external forces. There are diverse administrative reform theoretical perspectives. In my view, administrative reform can be explained in terms of the political market in which elected officials provide administrative reform to constituents based on their costs and benefits and constituents supply political support based on their costs and benefits (Feiock & Stream, 1988; Keohane, Revesz, & Stavins, 1997; Dixit, 1996). However, these micro aspects of the political market are embedded in macro environmental forces such as institutions and more general socio-economic conditions (Chackerian, 1996; DiMaggio & Powell, 1983; Berry & Berry, 1990). Therefore it is important to consider the macro environmental forces as well as the micro political market factors simultaneously. The units of analysis for this study are forty-eight U.S. continental states. Annual data for each of the variables in this study were collected for 48 U.S. continental states for the 17-year time period 1980 to 1996. The reason why I choose the year 1980 is related to "new federalism" and the beginning of the Reagan administration. From that time, not only were federal grants to states severely cut, but also states played more important roles in the federal system. This new trend, the so-called "Resurgence of the States" (Bowman, 1998) or "New Federalism" (Dye, 1990), provide the ideal context to study state government activities in terms of administrative reform. In addition, I choose 48 U.S. continental states to capture neighboring state effects on administrative reform. To answer the research question of what accounts for state administrative reform, I will integrate both the micro and macro factors and also consider the interaction effects among the factors. Micro factors are elements in the political market in which political exchange occurs between demand-side forces such as individual tax burden, conservative citizen ideology, fiscal stress, bureaucratic density, and business density and supply-side forces such as institutional turnover, conservative government ideology, unified government, and electoral competition. However, these micro factors do not exist in a vacuum, but are embedded in more broad macro forces. In this model, I consider four macro forces such as neighbor adoption, professional organization density, economic growth, and population density. In addition, I expect some interaction effects between the micro and macro factors. I used Event History Analysis as statistical method of my research. Based on the analysis, I found several important factors that have effects on the adoption of administrative reform some in common for both reforms, some unique to each. The factor that is common to both types of administrative reform is individual tax. Unique factors in regard to budgeting are: bureaucratic density, legislative turnover, and electoral competition. The adoption of performance budget reform occurs less when the power of bureaucracy is greater, more when there is legislative turnover and less when electoral competition is high. In contrast to the adoption of performance budget reform, the unique adoption factors for reorganization are conservative government ideology and higher population density. The power of bureaucracy has statistically significant and negative effect on the adoption of performance budget reform, while it does not have significant effect on the adoption of state executive branch reorganization. Legislative turnover has statistically significant and positive effect on the adoption of performance budget reform, but does not have significant effect on the adoption of state executive branch reorganization. Also, electoral competition has statistically significant and negative effect on the adoption of performance budget reform, but does not have statistically significant effect on the adoption of state executive branch reorganization. Even the patterns of interaction effects are somewhat unique for each of these reforms. There are no significant interaction effects in the model of performance budget reform. However, there are a few significant interaction effects in the model of state executive branch reorganization including neighbor adoption /unified government and economic growth / legislative turnover. These differences in the adoption processes might have important implications for a theory of administrative reform implementation. As Chackerian & Mavima (2001) and Matland (1995) suggest, different types of reforms lead to different factors being influential. This analysis is suggestive of the fact that the dynamics and influences on "administrative reform" may be very different depending on the nature of the reform.
June 3, 2003.
A Dissertation Submitted to the Askew School of Public Administration and Policy in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
Includes bibliographical references.
Richard Chackerian, Professor Directing Dissertation; William D. Berry, Outside Committee Member; Ralph Brower, Committee Member; Richard C. Feiock, Committee Member.
Florida State University
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