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Voluntary sector in transitionHard times or new opportunities?$
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Linda Milbourne

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9781847427236

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781847427236.001.0001

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Performance and Shifting Accountabilities: From Trust-Based to Regulated Inter-Organisational Relationships

Performance and Shifting Accountabilities: From Trust-Based to Regulated Inter-Organisational Relationships

Chapter:
(p.97) Five Performance and Shifting Accountabilities: From Trust-Based to Regulated Inter-Organisational Relationships
Source:
Voluntary sector in transition
Author(s):

Linda Milbourne

Publisher:
Policy Press
DOI:10.1332/policypress/9781847427236.003.0005

Competition and outsourcing have been closely associated with an increase in regulation, detailed service specification, targeted outcomes and performance monitoring. This chapter discusses changing cultures of accountability and reporting and their effects on voluntary organisations (VSOs). It first considers the more concrete effects of a growing performance culture and insights that could be gained from a trust-based approach. It draws on varied examples from the area-based studies to offer insights into ways that particular approaches to audit have become culturally embedded in expectations and organisational arrangements, posing problems for small VSOs. It explores the transition in relationships between funders and VSOs; and using the lens of trust, highlights ways that differential power, exercised through frameworks of performance management and regulation, undermine open communication in inter-organisational relationships. Paradoxically, the means used to ensure accountability and manage risks for funders may increase risks of concealing service failures, while also impinging on VS autonomy. The final part of the chapter also considers recent evidence to assess whether the rhetoric of localism and reducing the command and control culture of the state is bringing benefits to VSOs.

Keywords:   Trust, Power, Risk, Control, Rules of play, Gaming, Accountability, Verification, Critical management

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