Linking throughput and output legitimacy in Swiss forest policy implementation
- Journal Article
Policy scholars typically assume that implementing actors should follow democratically decided rules in linear, predictable ways. However, this assumption does not factor in the operational challenges and multiple accountability relations facing policy implementers in contemporary, hybrid policy implementation settings. Shifting the focus to throughput (governance process) and output legitimacy (results), this paper explores how throughput dimensions affect the implementation of policy outputs. We study a hybrid policy—the Swiss Forest Policy 2020—in a federalist, multi-level implementation context. We find that accountability dilemmas have negative consequences for output implementation, particularly when professionalism clashes with rules. Accountability dilemmas are exacerbated by policy incoherence and interact with policy ambiguity. However, high issue salience can partially compensate for the negative effects of these factors. In sum, we highlight how the role of implementing actors in democratic countries goes beyond rule-following: accountability relations and other throughput dimensions crucially affect output legitimacy. Show more
Journal / seriesPolicy sciences
Pages / Article No.
SubjectThroughput legitimacy; Output legitimacy; Implementation; Dilemmas; Accountability; Forest policy; Switzerland
Organisational unit08693 - Gruppe Natural Resource Policy / Natural Resource Policy
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