Consultation and Contest: the Danger of Mixing Modes

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Title Consultation and Contest: the Danger of Mixing Modes
Author Kane, John; Bishop, Patrick James
Journal Name Australian Journal of Public Administration
Editor Glyn Davis, John Wanna
Year Published 2002
Place of publication United Kingdom
Publisher Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
Abstract This paper argues that public consultative procedures undertaken by governments or their public services sometimes go awry because of certain confusions as to the nature and purposes of consultation. One of the most important of these is a tendency to view consultation as an exercise in policy determination by the public rather than as public input into the representative democratic process whose ultimate use is to be defined by the elected decision-makers. The result of this confusion is a tendency to misunderstand or overestimate what public consultations can achieve, and a failure to make a distinction between occasions when such consultations are useful and occasions when they must give way to explicit political contest. Three levels of activity — the technical, the transactional and the political — are analytically distinguished along with the modes of action-response appropriate to each — in order to explain and clarify the nature of good consultative practice.
Peer Reviewed Yes
Published Yes
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Copyright Statement Copyright 2002 Blackwell Publishing. The definitive version is available at []
Volume 61
Issue Number 1
Edition March 2002
Page from 87
Page to 94
ISSN 0313-6647
Date Accessioned 2003-04-08
Language en_AU
Research Centre Centre for Governance and Public Policy
Subject PRE2009-Comparative Government and Politics
Publication Type Journal Articles (Refereed Article)
Publication Type Code c1

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