Influence of Citizens and Form of Government on Alternative Service Delivery Choices in Local Governments

  •  Azhar Manzoor    


Citizens are an essential part of democratic setup and especially as recipients of public services play a crucial role in decisions regarding provision of these services. Citizen engagement not only provides feedback on the activities undertaken by government but may also influence how governments plans for future allocation of resources and means for providing various services. Citizen engagement emerges from the initiatives taken by the governments to improve the quality of government planning, processes, and decisions as well as it is a source of legitimacy to such decisions as part of democratic process. However, there are tremendous pressures from various actors such as government officials for cutting costs due to budgetary constraints, public managers for managing costs and quality, vendors for bargaining and deciding cost versus service quality measures, technical and line staff for administrating negotiations and producing services, and citizens for receiving services in exchange of price they pay in the form of taxes. This study examines the effects of citizens and forms of government on the service decisions regarding health and human services. Findings fail to support citizen’s role but indicate a significant role of form of government, partisanship orientation, and taxes in making alternative service delivery choices.

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