Mapping safeguarding processes of conflicting institutional value systems in delivering public services

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Today’s societal challenges increasingly ask for collaborations of public, private and societal parties to achieve public goals though public service delivery projects. Complex hybrid networks of multiple internal and external actors develop in which public organisations must cope with different logics in often conflicting value systems. In this paper we aim to improve our understanding of how multiple institutional logics can coexist within public commissioning organisations and how they are balanced. We look into how hybrid organisations select, prioritize and integrate plural institutional logics using different response strategies to organisational complexity. We use an in-depth case study to identify the main tensions that are present between the different value systems of the public, private and societal organisations involved in the delivery of public goods and services in the supply chain of an urban area project. And identify different resources (administrative and otherwise) that are consciously or unconsciously deployed coper with value conflicts. The fieldwork was conducted between June 2017 and May 2019 and consisted of interviews, observations and document analysis. Using public value process mapping, we followed the participatory procurement process ‘bottom-up’, connecting project objectives that are set on organisational level to project management practices and trace how public values are translated from public parties to private parties in the construction industry. Results indicate that responses to conflicting value systems were mostly individual and defensive. More informal ways of organising were only found as addition to the existing formal systems, preventing sustainable organisational maturing in handling the multi-level challenge of managing often conflicting policy goals. We should therefore expand our knowledge on combining ‘old’ and ‘new’ patterns of organisational governance in safeguarding public values.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of PROS 2019
Number of pages25
Publication statusPublished - 2019
Event11th International Process Symposium Organising in the Digital Age : Understanding the Dynamics of Work, Innovation, and Collective Action - Minoa Place, Chania, Greece
Duration: 18 Jun 201922 Jun 2019
Conference number: 11th


Conference11th International Process Symposium Organising in the Digital Age
Internet address


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