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The Cognitive Foundation Of A Co‐Production Approach To Performance Measurement: How Do Officials And Citizens Understand Government Performance In China?


  • Wai Fung Lam
  • Xiaoqi Wang


SUMMARY In this article, we explore and discuss the implications and relevance of the concept of co‐production to the design of performance measures. Such a co‐production approach to performance management is grounded upon a conception of public management that emphasizes collective problem‐solving involving not only government officials but also citizens. We argue successful application of such an approach requires that both officials and citizens be cognizant of their role as co‐producers in the process of public service delivery. Whether such a cognitive basis exists in a particular context will affect the utility and viability of the co‐production approach and is an important question that needs to be addressed empirically. To illustrate the importance of the cognitive basis for co‐production, we have conducted an empirical analysis of data collected in a survey in three cities in China. Our analysis suggests that the officials and citizens in the sample generally do not recognize that public administration is a co‐production process involving the efforts of both officials and citizens. Yet, our analysis identifies a number of leverage points for building the cognitive basis. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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  • Wai Fung Lam & Xiaoqi Wang, 2014. "The Cognitive Foundation Of A Co‐Production Approach To Performance Measurement: How Do Officials And Citizens Understand Government Performance In China?," Public Administration & Development, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 34(1), pages 32-47, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:padxxx:v:34:y:2014:i:1:p:32-47

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