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Stretched to the limit? The impact of Local Public Service Agreements on service improvements and central local relations

Sullivan, Helen; Gillanders, Gillian


Helen Sullivan

Gillian Gillanders


Local Public Service Agreements (LPSAs) are one of a member of policy instruments introduced by New Labour to facilitate service improvement in local government. Situating LPSAs in debates about central-local relationshp, this paper examines their impact to date. It compares the expectations of LPSAs amongst central and local stakeholders, delineates the experiences of each in attempting to work in a new way, identifies those aspects of the LPSA process which 'worked' and those which did not, considers evidence of impact and identifies implications for future policy and practice. The paper concludes that LPSAs have led to improvements in the systems and processes of local government, contributed to local partnership working and stimulated limited changes in central-local government relations. Early data indicate that LPSAs have had some impact on service improvement but there remain important questions about sustainability. © 2005 Taylor & Francis.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Nov 1, 2005
Journal Local Government Studies
Print ISSN 0300-3930
Electronic ISSN 1743-9388
Publisher Taylor & Francis (Routledge)
Peer Reviewed Not Peer Reviewed
Volume 31
Issue 5
Pages 555-574
Keywords local public service agreements, service improvement, central-local relations
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