A crucial challenge for the coordination of horizontal policy programs—those designed to tackle crosscutting issues—is how to motivate government organizations to contribute to such programs. Hence, it is crucial to study how practitioners in implementing organizations view and appreciate the coordination of such programs. Assisted by Q-methodology, this inductive study reveals three significantly different “images”: central frame setting, networking via boundary spanners, and coordination beyond window dressing. Most surprisingly, different images show up among respondents within the same organizations and horizontal programs. The authors find that the images reflect elements of the literature: the resistance to hierarchical central control, the need for local differentiation and increased incentives, and a collaboration-oriented culture. Most importantly, practitioners of implementing organizations perceive top-down mechanisms as ineffective to achieve coordination and ask for adaptive arrangements, involvement, and deliberative processes when designing coordination arrangements and during the collaboration.

Additional Metadata
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1111/puar.13136, hdl.handle.net/1765/123121
Journal Public Administration Review
Molenveld, A, Verhoest, K, Voets, J, & Steen, T. (2019). Images of Coordination: How Implementing Organizations Perceive Coordination Arrangements. Public Administration Review, 80(1), 9–22. doi:10.1111/puar.13136