0
Jump to main content

Inter-municipal cooperation are not a panacea

Sara Blåka of the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Agder has submitted her thesis entitled «Cooperation is no Panacea: Inter-municipal Cooperation, Service Delivery, and the Optimum Scale of Operation. A Study of how Cooperation Affects Performance in Local Service Delivery» and will defend the thesis for the PhD-degree Friday 24 June 2022. (Photo: Private)

Cooperation is not a universal solution for extracting service delivery benefits of scale, but, rather, depends on conditions linked to (at least) the task at hand, the form, and the size of IMC.

Sara Blåka

PhD Candidate

You may follow the disputation online. Link for registration as an online spectator at the bottom of this page.

 

Sara Blåka of the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Agder has submitted her thesis entitled «Cooperation is no Panacea: Inter-municipal Cooperation, Service Delivery, and the Optimum Scale of Operation. A Study of how Cooperation Affects Performance in Local Service Delivery» and will defend the thesis for the PhD-degree Friday 24 June 2022. 

She has followed the PhD programme at the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Agder, with specialisation in Public Administration.

Summary of the thesis by Sara Blåka:

Inter-municipal cooperation are not a panacea

Inter-municipal cooperation is one of the most widely-used organizational alternatives in local governments’ attempts to adapt to ever-increasing demands for high quality and cost-efficient services.

Few studies of IMC effects

Although IMC is widespread, studies of its effects are largely lacking.

This study contributes to filling this gap by asking when and how shared service delivery is beneficial.

This is done by investigating Norwegian local fire services, emergency primary care, and auditing empirically.

Findings

The findings advance the notion that there is no ‘one best way’ for designing organizational forms of local service delivery. The effect of cooperation depends on what type of task you share.

There is also no ‘one size fits all’, because the effect of cooperation is highly dependent on the size of cooperation.

Finally, cooperation cannot be considered a panacea because it cannot solve all the problems that small (or large) municipalities face in delivering services. Cooperation is not a universal solution for extracting service delivery benefits of scale, but, rather, depends on conditions linked to (at least) the task at hand, the form, and the size of IMC.

Disputation facts:

The trial lecture and the public defence will take place in Auditorium H1 058, Campus Kristiansand and online via the Zoom conferencing app - registration link below. 

Dean Anne Halvorsen, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Agder, will chair the disputation.

The trial lecture Friday 24 June at 10:15 hours

Public defence Friday 24 June at 12:15 hours

 

Given topic for trial lecture: «Intermunicipal collaboration and change: how can the effects of intermunicipal collaboration lead to institutional and organizational change?»

Thesis Title«Cooperation is no Panacea: Inter-municipal Cooperation, Service Delivery, and the Optimum Scale of Operation. A Study of how Cooperation Affects Performance in Local Service Delivery»

Search for the thesis in AURA - Agder University Research Archive, a digital archive of scientific papers, theses and dissertations from the academic staff and students at the University of Agder.

The thesis is available here:

https://uia.brage.unit.no/uia-xmlui/handle/11250/2998555

 

The CandidateSara Blåka (1985, Kvinesdal) Bachelors degree and Masters degree (2011) from UiA. Title of the Master thesis: «Kommunesektoren- mot et strukturelt mangfold? : "utviklingen av formell struktur i norske kommuner». Present position: Researcher at the Research Institute NORCE.

Opponents:

First opponent: Associate Professor Ann-Karin Tennås Holmen, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Stavanger, Norway

Second opponent: Pro-rector for Regional Development and Urban Policies and Assistant Professor PhD Filipe Teles, Universidade de Aveiro, Portugal

Associate Professor Marco Seeber, Department of Political Science and Management, University of Agder, is appointed as the administrator for the assessment committee.

Supervisors in the doctoral work were Professor Dag Ingvar Jacobsen, Department of Political Science and Management, University of Agder (main supervisor) and Professor Benny Geys, Department of Economics, BI Norwegian Business School, Bergen (co-supervisor)

What to do as an online audience member:

The disputation is open to the public, but to follow the trial lecture and the public defence digitally, transmitted via the Zoom conferencing app, you have to register as an audience member on this link:

https://uiano.zoom.us/j/63853356410?pwd=MytLbmw4aEZqbFZBNzFqNWRIdU9YZz09

A Zoom-link will be returned to you. (Here are introductions for how to use Zoom: support.zoom.us if you cannot join by clicking on the link.)

We ask online audience members to join the virtual trial lecture at 10:05 at the earliest and the public defense at 12:05 at the earliest. After these times, you can leave and rejoin the meeting at any time. Further, we ask audience members to turn off their microphone and camera and keep them turned off throughout the event. You do this at the bottom left of the image when in Zoom. We recommend you use ‘Speaker view’. You select that at the top right corner of the video window when in Zoom.

Opponent ex auditorio:

The chair invites members of the public to pose questions ex auditorio in the introduction to the public defense. Deadline is during the break between the two opponents. The person asking questions should have read the thesis. For online audience the Contact Persons e-mail are available in the chat function during the Public Defense, and questions ex auditorio can be submitted to Cecilie Rygh Mawdsley on e-mail cecilie.mawdsley@uia.no.