Smart Contracting for Local Government Services: Processes and Experience

Front Cover
Greenwood Publishing Group, 1999 - Business & Economics - 221 pages

Privatization of local government is making headlines throughout the world. Scottsdale, Arizona, contracts for fire protection; Baltimore, to run nine city schools; and Chicago and Philadelphia for a range of services from janitors to recreational facilities. The United Kingdom, New Zealand, and Australia have arguably gone further than the United States. But much of the debate on contracting has been high on politics, philosophy, and emotion with little attention to practical issues of how to do contracting well. The book shifts the debate away from the politics and rhetoric to the practicalities and realities of contracting.

The book is concerned with four issues--the role of contracting in government, the appropriateness of different contracting strategies, the process of contracting, and who does the contracting. Drawing on examples in the United States and the United Kingdom, the author considers the historical and cultural context of contracting, where contracting works and where it doesn't, the features of smart contracting, and the conditions that are conducive to smart contracting. The book provides an invaluable guide to those concerned with the practicalities of contracting.


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Setting the Scene
Local Governments in the US and the UK
How Are Services Provided?
What Difference Does Contracting Make?
The Make or Buy Decision and Contract Management
Smart Contracting for Public Services
Only in Los AngelesContract Cities and LA County
The Indianapolis ExperienceUsing Competitive Contracting to Improve Services and Efficiency
Careless Contracting in New York CityThe Problems of Designing a Contracting System to Avoid Corruption
Competition Affects EverybodyContracting for Support Services in Milwaukee
Alarm Bells RingingCan Putting Out Fires for Profit Work?
The English Contracting Revolution
References and Bibliography

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Page vii - ... rather than logic, have often dictated placement. The police program is found in the Law School at the University of Missouri and at the Los Angeles City and State Colleges; in the Department of Sociology or Social Sciences at New York University, University of Nebraska, and Fresno State College; in the School of Public Administration at the University of Southern California; in the School of Business and Public Service at Michigan State College; under the Adult Education and Extension Service...

About the author (1999)

KEVIN LAVERY is currently the chief executive of the City of Newcastle-upon-Tyne in Great Britain./e While doing the research for this book, he was on a Harkness Fellowship at the School of Public Administration at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles.

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