After more than a decade of the introduction of performance pledges in Hong Kong, this article examines their effectiveness in informing and empowering customers of public services, with respect to access, choice, information, redress and representation. We analyse the content of eighty published performance pledges to explore the kind of customer-orientation culture that is implied and whether and how these pledges can enable customers to play their expected role in a new performance regime. It is found that in the majority of cases, what is in the pamphlet has not been supportive of the move to empower customers and to inculcate a strong customer culture. The pledge culture has not permeated effectively into the public sector bureaucracy either because it is something alien to its dominant culture, or it has been subject to agency and staff adaptation during the process of implementation just like any new policy innovation. Copyright © 2005 Taylor & Francis.
CitationCheung A. B. L. (2005). What's in a pamphlet?: Shortfalls and paradoxical flaws in Hong Kong's performance pledges. Public Management Review, 7(3), 341-366. doi: 10.1080/14719030500180856
- Performance pledge