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Predicting Relational Governance in the Public Sector

Published by USC Bedrosian Center on

Consortium on Collaborative Governance

Featuring Craig R. Smith, University of Arizona

Relational governance is increasingly viewed as an important component in managing exchanges between contracting parties. The presence of extra-contractual and institutional features may enhance the ability to structure exchanges and therefore need to be considered in the contracting decision calculus. To date, much of the literature focuses almost exclusively on exchanges between two profit-seeking firms. One distinguishing feature of this research is its discussion of relational governance in a public sector context and its emergence in the highly institutionalized environment of government contracting. Using local government contracting data from across the U.S., I examine the determinants of relational governance and test (and find support for) the proposition that perceived political commitment increases the likelihood of relational governance forms.

Bedrosian Center