Towards a systematic approach to understanding and managing innovation in the public sector: a comparative study of four EU countries

Parna, Ott (2014) Towards a systematic approach to understanding and managing innovation in the public sector: a comparative study of four EU countries. Masters thesis (MPhil), University of Sussex.

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This research is about innovation in the public sector. In a time of economic crisis and continued cost-cutting, public sector innovation is essential for governments in order to maintain service standards and find radical solutions for complex challenges. The research question of the thesis asks what are the main characteristics and driving forces of the public service innovation system and do they differ across
countries? The research has four perspectives through which the public sector innovation process is analysed: managerial, learning, technological, and systems perspective. As data on public sector innovation is quite rare, this research provides a unique combination of theoretical foundations and exploratory cross-country survey on public sector technological innovations in four European countries – the UK, Denmark, Finland and Estonia. The current research is one of the early empirical exercises
(the survey originated from 2005) to study innovation in the public sector.

The main contribution of new knowledge of this thesis is four-fold. Firstly, the purposely developed theoretical framework that gives a structured approach how to understand and manage innovation in public sector services. Secondly, the new conceptual-methodological approach of how to study and analyse the innovation process in public service organisations. Thirdly, the hand-made list of public
service innovations from four countries and the database of the survey results. Fourthly, the quantitative analysis and synthesis of the survey results which characterises the innovation process of public service organisations in the survey-countries. Especial value of the research is that it allows understanding the relative importance of different factors (in comparison to other factors) influencing
the innovation process in public sector services and shows the dynamics of the public sector innovation system. Research results contribute to the literature of public sector innovation, learning and management, and enriching academic debates around this increasingly important topic. Moreover, the research also analyses the differences of public and private sector innovation as well as innovation-related organisational learning issues, contributing both to theories of evolutionary economics and innovation. Additionally, contributions are made to economic theory, organisational theory, public administration and political science.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Schools and Departments: University of Sussex Business School > SPRU - Science Policy Research Unit
Subjects: J Political Science > JF Political institutions (General) > JF1338 Public administration
J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe)
Depositing User: Library Cataloguing
Date Deposited: 28 Feb 2014 07:33
Last Modified: 17 Sep 2015 15:08

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