Semi-autonomous agencies: Useful scapegoats
Reformers in many developed countries relied on the creation of semi-autonomous agencies as a strategy for improving citizen satisfaction with government. Did agencification actually produce the expected result? Sjors Overman draws on data from fifteen European countries and suggests that it can, although for unexpected reasons. In the domain of tax services, “semi-autonomous authorities absorb some of the blame for bad performance for the government . . . The presence of an agency worked as a scapegoat for dissatisfied services users, and resulted in less dissatisfaction with the government.” Read the article.