Evaluating the Best Value framework in UK local government services

Rodney McAdam, Timothy Walker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this article is to conduct an exploratory multiple case analysis of local government delivery Best Value by focusing on Environmental Waste Management Service (EWMS) delivery. EWMS is chosen as a key area of Best Value development and application. The Best Value framework was developed by the UK Government to introduce performance management to local government as part of the 'Modernising Government' agenda. There is a need to-critically evaluate Best Value so that local government can determine if this is a suitable and sustainable framework for the management of public services and that it can make a contribution to increased public service effectiveness. The article describes an exploratory multiple case research study and shows that the imposition of Best Value in local government must recognise the complexity and diversity within local government services, rather than adopting an inflexible approach to deployment. There is a need to go beyond generalised performance measures and benchmarks and to attempt to understand the difficulties and complexities of localised conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)183-196
Number of pages14
JournalPublic Administration and Development
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - Aug 2004

Bibliographical note

Copyright 2008 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


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