Handbook on Policy, Process and Governing
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Handbook on Policy, Process and Governing

Edited by H. K. Colebatch and Robert Hoppe

This Handbook covers the accounts, by practitioners and observers, of the ways in which policy is formed around problems, how these problems are recognized and understood, and how diverse participants come to be involved in addressing them. H.K. Colebatch and Robert Hoppe draw together a range of original contributions from experts in the field to illuminate the ways in which policies are formed and how they shape the process of governing.
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Chapter 10: Implementation

Peter Hupe


When people use the word ‘implementation’ they may refer to a task for others. On the other hand, people from whom such subsequent action is expected may see their task as anything but the ‘implementation’ of the plans of others. In policy processes both contrasting views, implementation as following instructions and implementation as continuous practice, can be observed. Despite development in terms of methodological rigour and the availability of comprehensive explanatory approaches, in implementation research the two views have not merged into a broadly accepted, ‘synthesized’ approach. The view of implementation as practice may explain more, certainly when the ‘policy politics’ concerned is taken into account. At the same time the alternative view remains attractive in terms of democratic accountability. Because each has an appeal in its own right, the two views of implementation can be expected to continue their co-existence side by side.

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