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Policy Analysis in Canada$
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Laurent Dobuzinskis and Michael Howlett

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9781447334910

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447334910.001.0001

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Public policy in the provinces: more powering; less puzzling

Public policy in the provinces: more powering; less puzzling

Chapter:
(p.99) Five Public policy in the provinces: more powering; less puzzling
Source:
Policy Analysis in Canada
Author(s):

Ken Rasmussen

Publisher:
Policy Press
DOI:10.1332/policypress/9781447334910.003.0005

This chapter examines the role politics plays in the activities of provincial public servants, and how this requires provincial public services to provide both politically sensitive and administratively effective advice. Provincial public servants are torn between their roles as professional analysts and the pressures of a complex system of networked government. Rather than putting the emphasis on “speaking truth to power” they are more often concerned with “making sense together” by encouraging learning between policy actors and elected officials. In this regard, provincial public servants have a larger role in governance when compared to their federal counterparts. That is, provincial public servants are not only assemblers of facts or gatherers of data, but rather tend to be deeply engaged with relevant communities in a process of refining and redefining provincial public policy.

Keywords:   policy capacity, evidence, political goals, analytical, policy making, innovation, stakeholders, trust, political agenda, governance

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