To contrast the Norwegian experiences we apply a comparative approach, and gather knowledge on these issues through research on the following subjects:
- Institutional responses to welfare state challenges
- The organisation of voluntary work
- The organization of local government, governance and democracy
- Performance, audit, evaluation and accountability
Head of Research Group
More about the Research Group
Relatively independent of the international financial crisis, we find rising public expectations of a professional, highly specialised and efficient welfare service provision in Norway. Because of its relatively large public sector, involved in a broad spectrum of issues, the complexity in the problems that people wants solved is substantial.
These rising expectations are met by different reforms, together aimed at restructuring administrative borders, organisational forms, governance arrangements and control systems.
Examples of such reforms include the hospital reform establishing Health Enterprises as the hospital owners; the Labour and Welfare Reform (Nav-reformen), aimed at coordinating the national public employment services, the national social insurance administration and the municipal social services; and the collaboration reform (Samhandlingsreformen) aimed at, among other things, seamless delivery of health and care services for older people.
Such reforms involve changes in Norwegian public administration and management, inspired by ideas prevailing internationally, such as New Public Management and New Public Governance. As the institutional solutions build on a variety of theories concerning governance mechanisms, and different ideological orientations, organisation and management in the public sector therefore become hybrid – and complex.