The last two decades of the twentieth century were dominated by a shift towards increased autonomy for public sector organisations such as agencies. This solved problems but also created new ones as coordination from the centre was lacking. There was even a sense of loss of control. As a consequence, many countries have developed a range of reaction patterns to the centrifugal behaviour of these autonomous units.
The Coordination of Public Sector Organizations discusses the trajectories and mechanisms of central government fragmentation and coordination, in the period 1980-2005. Seven countries are looked at: New Zealand, the UK, Sweden, the Netherlands, Belgium, France, and the USA. These mechanisms for coordination are clustered into three types, based on markets, networks, and hierarchies. The book shows a range of patterns over 25 years, with agencification and other forms of organisational proliferation leading to more coordination through markets and networks, and ultimately to coordination through renewed hierarchy-type mechanisms.