The book contains a wealth of detailed and fascinating case studies of New Public Management (NPM) in practice in the UK, exploring the enactment of NPM in its specific organizational contexts.
A range of public services are covered including local government, education, social work and the police, with particular attention paid to the National Health Service.
The editors introduce the case studies through an examination of the 'hydra-headed' nature of NPM, its variability between sectors and its contested character.
This provides themes that are developed within the case studies, where, in varying organizational contexts, the meaning of NPM is negotiated and its impact on those working in the organization is explored.
The book points to the complex, fluid and negotiated character of NPM, as well as its centrality in reconfiguring occupational identities and relations within public service organizations.