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Managing street-level bureaucrats in the aftermath of NPM – the every day life and work of case workers at the Swedish Social Insurance Agency
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Stockholm Business School, Accounting.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Stockholm Business School, Accounting.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Stockholm Centre for Organizational Research (SCORE).
2015 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The paper aims to contribute to the understanding of NPM's aftermath. During the last decades, NPM has been highly influential of management accounting and control practices in the public sector around the world. As an unintended consequence, management accounting and control has become a command and control driven practice where attempts to decentralize and to empower have paradoxically lead to increased centralized control and disempowerment because the focus on efficiency and results has resulted in detailed performance measurement.

In this paper we account for a case study of the Swedish Social Insurance Agency (SIA) that has been undertaking a major management accounting and control reform since 2012 in order to curb the unexpected consequences of previous NPM reforms. The study focuses on street-level bureaucrats and is based on 30 semi-structured interviews, of mainly case-workers, that were conducted in 2014. The interest in the work conducted by street-level bureaucrats dates back to the 1980s with Lipsky's seminal work based on studies undertaken at the very birth of NPM. Now, 30 years later, a new crossroad can be identified, where the ideals of NPM are challenged, which makes it relevant to return to this practice. The paper discusses how the everyday life and work of the case-workers has changed in response to the management accounting and control changes that have taken place at the agency.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015.
National Category
Business Administration
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-124006OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-124006DiVA: diva2:880651
Conference
23nd Nordic Academy of Management Conference, Copenhagen, Denmark, 12–14 August, 2015
Funder
Riksbankens Jubileumsfond
Available from: 2015-12-09 Created: 2015-12-09 Last updated: 2016-11-22Bibliographically approved

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Mårtensson, MariaHolmgren Caicedo, MikaelTamm Hallström, Kristina
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CiteExportLink to record
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Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf