26 January 2007

Centralisation versus diversity and dynamism

Referring to the UK’s central Government the current ‘Economist’ says:  

When the government is searching for new ideas it always has to look abroad (usually to less centralised places such as America), since councils in Britain have little freedom to experiment with new ways of doing things. Trust the locals (subscription?), 25 January
One of the advantages, as I see it, of a Social Policy Bond regime is that, while there would be uniformity of desired social outcome, there need be no uniformity of approach. For most social and environmental problems, a mosaic of different, dynamic projects and initiatives will work best. There needs to be the freedom to experiment with new ideas, and for those ideas that fail to be terminated. It’s also a matter of incentives: when government stipulates one approach, there is every incentive to follow it and to keep it going even when its failures are obvious. Too many interests become vested in its perpetuation – not least those of the programme administrators.

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