IMPLEMENTATION AND ANALYSIS OF PUBLIC POLICY
Question One: The relationship between policy makers and implementation agents
Policy implementation is in fact among the most important aspect that is involved in the process of the management within any organization. Thus there is always an apparent need to ensure that there is a relationship that is more of a symbiotic whereby both partners have to dependent on each other in ensuring that there is a success in the entire process of formulating and implementing policies (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984). For instance, the leaders who are mostly the policy makers must ensure there is a cordial relationship between them and their followers who act as the agents of policy implementation. Therefore both the policy makers and the implementation agents of the formulated policies needs to be put on board all the way since the inception of a policy formulation process. The need to advocate for this is mainly as a result of the importance which is associated with the willingness of all the groups, that is, the policy makers and policy implementation agents in the entire of the process so as to make sure it usually becomes a success (Moore, 1995).
However, the policy formulation without proper implementation are just useless however how better they are. This due to the fact that the most crucial point in the entire process of setting up policies and ensuring that they effectively work. Therefore the formulated policies requires a very effective and efficient way of ensuring that the policies are adequately implemented. Hence this is only achievable by making sure that the agents for the policy of implementation are involved in the entire process of policy formulation just from its most initial stages (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984). Thus this is one of the most crucial step in ensuring that the agents of policy implementation feel the aspect of belonging hence the need for participation in ensuring that the whole process of the policy formulation and implementation is a success (Moore, 1995).
The most important thing is usually to consider the process of policy implementation while the entire policy formulation is usually at its formative stages (Moore, 1995). This therefore works in making sure that the implementation process has already been planned for early in advance and all the necessary considerations evaluated to determine the viability of the implementation process. The importance of this can be due to the fact that failure of putting on board the policy implementation agents leads to the failure of the implementation of formulated policies thereby leading to a total failure of the entire process (Moore, 1995). Hence the need for a collaborative approach is always advocated for whereby all along the two partners of policy formulation and implementation require to work together in ensuring that the policies that have been formulated are thus amicably implemented successfully (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984).
Moreover, this calls for a need to have an effective chain of communication between the policy makers and the agents of the policy implementation (Moore, 1995). This would be critically important in making sure that there is an effective way of conveying information between the policy makers and the implementation agents. This is also very crucial in monitoring the policies that have already been implemented through constant evaluation and providing feedback to the policy makers (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984). Thus there always the need for the existence of a cordial relationship that is somewhat symbiotic in ensuring that there is an amicable policy formulation and implementation process which ensures that all the policies are adequately dealt with to ensure their success.
Question Two: Policy implementation as an hypothesis testing
Policy implementation is usually a phenomenon whereby a need for the evaluation and monitoring in order to ensure that they have been efficiently implemented. Thus it is usually another form of hypothesis testing. For instance, the hypothesis testing is a common and often phenomenon which involves conducting tests as well as experiments with the aim of determining whether what is the proposed explanation for phenomenon that are observed are capable of working in practice (Moore, 1995). Therefore an hypothesis is usually a tentative explanation provided to a certain phenomenon hence the need for determining whether that explanation holds any truth. Thus the process of policy implementation is usually in most aspects related to hypothesis testing in the sense that they both involve evaluation of a certain tentative phenomenon for which they have to provide a conclusion (Moore, 1995).
Moreover, this is also elaborated by the Moore’s three triangle which provides a mix for the consumers, competitors and the corporate by determining whether devised policies are applicable in real situations. Therefore the tentative explanation which in our case is the hypothesis is usually subjected to the process of the hypothesis testing with an aim determining the explanation is true or not (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984). However, there are various set of guidelines that a tentative explanation has to be subjected to in order to consider the process as a true hypothesis testing. Thus the hypothesis must be relatively simple and testable even though this has not always been the case. Moreover, for an hypothesis to be tested it should be in a position to adequately explain the phenomenon under all set of circumstances. Therefore if the hypothesis is only capable of explaining a phenomenon from only a single set of conditions, then it is usually considered unviable (Moore, 1995).
However, this forms the main aspects of the justification of the policy implementation as closely related to the process of hypothesis testing. This is due to the fact that for policies to be implemented they must first be formulated by the policy makers. Thus the formulated policies before implementation can be considered to be a sort of an hypothesis, and the process of the policy implementation is thus considered to be the policy implementation stage. For instance, the hypothesis testing is mainly aimed at determining if there is any truth within a proposed tentative explanation of a certain phenomenon (Moore, 1995). In comparison policy implementation is also aimed at determining whether the formulated policies are workable or not. Therefore this provides the main relationship between these two aspects of evaluation of certain situations.
Question Three: Learning organizations and policy implementation process
Nowadays a great number of consultants as well as organizations have realized the significance of organizational learning, leading to the notion of a learning organization which for a long period has been a crucial point of concern to most of the organization interested in the development of their workforce. Therefore considering the aspects of a learning organization there was the need to embrace this idea in which a variety of organizations are capable of responding to a variety of pressures they may face (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984). Thus the idea of a learning organization is mainly characterized by the realization of both the collective as well as individual learning as a key towards facing many challenges faced by organizations in modern world. For instance, a large number of such organizations have embraced the Total Quality Management (TQM) as a result of continued learning organization phenomenon which ensures they amicably adapt to changing environments (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984).
Moreover, the aspect of a learning organization leads to two main things that are of great significance. This include the issue of difficulty encountered in the identification of the real life examples. This has as a result of the organization’s vision been too ideal or may be as a result of the lack of relevance in the company’s dynamic of organizations. Moreover, the theoretical framework involving the issues of learning organization has been of vital significance of the recent past as the need for the embracing of the learning organization has tremendously increased (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984). For instance, irrespective of learning organization theorists often drawing ideas from the aspects of organizational learning, the reverse has been rarely experienced. This is mainly because the organizational learning is mainly concerned with the processes that mainly takes place with the involvement of collective and individual learning within an organization; while the learning organization consists of an action orientation which is mainly directed towards devising necessary evaluative methodological mechanisms capable of helping in the identification, promotion as well as evaluation of the learning processes within an organization. Thus it would be justifiable to argue that the aspect of organizational learning is actually the process or activity through which organizations finally end up reaching their state of an ideal learning organization (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984).
However, the current emergence of the learning organization idea is deeply entrenched in the concepts such as the embracing of a learning society. Perhaps linking the issue of continuous learning experience in life to the situations of a constantly increasing changes that necessitates the need for embracing the aspect of continuous learning (Moore, 1995). Therefore we must be in the frontline in the enhancement of becoming adept of continuous learning within the organizations. This therefore enhances the ability of not only transforming our institutions with respect to the situations that are constantly changing; however, we are usually required to embark on inventing as well as developing organizations which are in themselves learning systems meaning they are able to bring their own transformation on a continuous basis.
Moreover, a learning organization is usually involves all the employees in totality in a process of collaborative and collectively accountable continuous change whose values and principles are aimed at ensuring the formulated policies are adequately implemented. For instance, the learning organization facilitates the continuous process of change which is a very crucial aspect of policy implementation within an organization (Moore, 1995).
Question Four: Collaboration in implementation process
Collaboration is usually the process whereby different groups or individuals are involved in working together with an aim of achieving a certain set goal. Thus it can be regarded as a recursive process in which two or a variety of organizations or people usually work together for the purpose of realizing shared goals, for example, a certain intriguing endeavor which requires a collaborative approach involving sharing of resources, knowledge, expertise and decision making (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984). However, a great deal of collaborations mainly requires leadership, even though the type of this leadership could be social within an egalitarian and decentralized group. In particular, in situations when a collaborative approach to a certain phenomenon is adopted there are higher chances of achieving greater achievements in comparison to situations where collaboration is not embraced (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984).
For instance, many are the times when a collaborative approach is usually adopted when it is the only way out to facilitate the achievement of certain set goals which requires pooling together of some of the aspects which will enhance the implementation of such specific goals. For example, the case of the increase in the levels of lead toxicity within the New York city as a result of the paints that were been used called for a collaborative approach between the Health Department in New York headed by Gordon Chase together with the House and Development Authority within the same city (Moore, 1995). The call for a collaborative approach was mainly advocated mainly because it would enable the two organizations to handle the situation amicably mainly by collaboratively joining hands in the implementation of policies that were aimed at alleviating the problem of lead toxicity.
However, many are the times when getting all the collaborators on board in order to work together for a common goal proves to be a bit tricky. Moreover, in our case it was necessary to work together for the attainment of a common goal hence the Health department had to collaboratively work with the House and Development Authority in order to amicably solve the prevailing problem once and for all (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984). This was mainly because in order for the achievement of the set goals it was necessary for both organizations to work together in ensuring the implementation of the policies that had already been arrived at, that is, replacing the paints which would have otherwise led finding for a lasting solution to the problem that was prevailing (Moore, 1995).
Moreover, at a times when collaboration is not possible due to the unwillingness of one of the partners to collaborate, then one of the partner has to seek for other ways of ensuring that all the partners are put on board in order to amicably implement the policies. For instance, an intervention from an higher authority partner would be sought in order to make sure all the other collaborative partners collaborate (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984). However, this would call for continued supervision and monitoring to ensure collaboration throughout the policy implementation process. Moreover, the other partner may also choose to collaborate with some junior executives in the other partner in order to ensure that they push the collaboration idea to the organization management. Collaboration has therefore been very critical in making sure that some of most crucial policies have been implemented (Moore, 1995).
Question Five: Skilled leadership
In order to ensure that in an organization there is effective implementation of the policies there is also the need to ensure that the people to whom the responsibility of overseeing the process are capable of executing their duties diligently (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984). This is usually very critical because it ensures that the people who are required to spearhead the policy implementation possess the required leadership skills which enables them to lead the organization throughout the policy implementation period. Hence appropriate and timely policy implementation are very crucial in ensuring the success of an organization. Moreover, skilled leadership is also required in order to be able to effectively lead the organization into an effective process of appropriate policy implementation (Moore, 1995).
Moreover, in order for someone to be an effective leader he/she deserves to posses various characteristics that enables him or her to be in a position to amicably influence his or her followers. For instance, they usually requires to possess an aspect of aggressiveness band masterfulness of all the issues rotating around the organization they are heading. Moreover, many are the times when various leaders function interchangeably between facilitation and supervising what is been undertaken by who are under them (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984). However, these aspect ensures that the leaders are always in control of most of the activities that take place within their organization whereby they needs to consult with other members prior to arriving at a major decision within the organization (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984).
However, according to (Moore, 1995) leaders are made up of a combination of factors, there are those who are born naturally as leaders whereas others learns the aspects of effective leadership. Thus the sayings such as “Leaders are born, not made” as well as another one such as “Leadership is usually a capacity that can’t be acquired” holds no truth because most of the leadership skills are so much entrenched into someone’s personality which is subject to learning. Thus it is highly possible to learn leadership skills. Therefore these aspects are observable at situations of conflict within the organization whereby the true leadership skills are usually portrayed. However, a true leader is the one possesses the power to influence his/her followers through effective communication both upwards and downwards (Moore, 1995). Hence this requires a transformational leadership which allows all the followers to freely express their feelings. Moreover, good leaders are also responsible of creating more leaders by training their followers.
However, the strategic triangle proposed by Moore is also an effective tool that facilitates skilled leaders to effectively implement the policies within their organizations within the required time and very amicably (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984). The three triangle theories involves three main factors such as the consumer, competition and the corporate or company. The consumer mainly involves the needs and their trends which an effective leader should identify and find ways of ensuring that they are fully catered for (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984). Moreover, the corporate or company also has the ways in which it ensures that effective leadership is usually adhered to within the organization. This is mainly through the skills, assets and culture that are deeply entrenched within the organization. Thus good leaders ensure all these are aimed at promoting effective implementation of policies within the organizations that they head. However, competition allows leaders of the organizations to identify the weaknesses or vulnerabilities within the organization hence facilitating seeking for the ways of rectifying them early.
Question Six: Public value
Public value is one of the most things of concern to many mangers all over the world ranging both public and private organizations (Moore, 1995). For instance, a great deal of those who are in management positions in the for-profit sector are usually mainly concerned on how various organizational processes or units are involved in the addition of value to their respective organizations and customers (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984). Thus by doing this the main issue of interest is usually the aspects of enhancing productivity within their organization which is thereby translated to profitability.
Moreover, the public sector managerial success is usually greatly associated with the initiation as well as the reshaping of the public sector enterprises into the modalities that ensures that there is an increase in the value of services that are offered public may it be both on long term or even short term basis (Moore, 1995). Therefore to a greater extent this is usually associated with an increase in effectiveness, efficiency as well as fairness in the defined missions. Moreover, at times it may also mean the introduction of programs that are responsible of responding to a variety of political aspirations as well as meeting new needs within the organization’s environment of tasks enhancing the use of older capabilities more effectively and responsibly (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984).
Moreover, the aspect of coming together and joining helps in the creation of various sources of new value aimed at benefiting all those involved in both the private and public sector. The accrued benefits that are translated tom public value can therefore be regarded as what is achieved when there is a collaboration between two or more organizations with an aim of achieving certain set goals (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984). Therefore the public value in this phenomenon may arise as a result of economies of scale which occur as a result of pooling of resources as well as other factors such as expertise and knowledge.
However, when the above mentioned joint activity facilitated by collaboration is mainly aimed at only increasing the public value, then there is the need for recognizing that from a technical point of view it would purely not be easy to achieve. Thus if the collaboration and determination in both the public and private sectors usually create public value thus it also enhances the aspects of differentiation and specialization (Moore, 1995). In fact the aspect of specialization is usually a great contributor of public value creation irrespective of either in public or private sector. Since both of these factors the differentiation as well as specialization leads to division of labor on the basis of comparative advantage which is among the greatest drives of public value creation (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984).
Moreover, at situation when there is an achievement of the optimal combination of integration and specialization, this leads to public value by facilitating an achievement of a blend between the formal hierarchical coordination, intelligent structural coordination as well as informal working relationships all of which are very fundamental to the achievement of the public value may it be in the public or private sector (Pressman and Wildavsky, 1984). Thus an appropriate and timely combination of all these factors ensures that public value is without any doubt achieved (Moore, 1995).
Moore, M. (1995). Creating Public Value: Strategic Management in Government, Cambridge: Harvard University Press.
Pressman, J. and Wildavsky, A. (1984). Implementation, 3rd ed. Berkeley: University of California Press.