Document Type

Article

Publication Date

9-2020

Abstract

In managing complex policy problems in the federal system, state and local governments are organized into different arrangements for translating policy goals into policy outcomes. Air quality management is used as a test case to understand these variations and their impact on policy outcomes. With data from Clean Air Act implementation plans and a survey of state and local air quality managers, five separate institutional designs are identified: (1) central agencies; (2) top-down; (3) donor–recipient; (4) regional agencies; and (5) emergent governance. Findings indicate that some arrangements (donor–recipient and emergent governance) result in notably better air quality than others (central agencies, top-down). Specifically, when designed to allow bargaining between state and local officials, intergovernmental management is still the most effective approach to complex policy problems; but, in absence of this, conventional federalism arrangements are less effective than public agencies self-organizing around shared policy goals.

Copyright Statement

This is the peer reviewed version of the following article:

Fowler, L. (2020). Governance, Federalism and Organizing Institutions to Manage Complex Problems. Public Administration, 98(3), 713-729.

which has been published in final form at https://doi.org/10.1111/padm.12638. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.

Available for download on Thursday, September 01, 2022

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