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Soc. Sci. 2016, 5(4), 54; doi:10.3390/socsci5040054

Dispositional Immobility: An Analysis of Non-Decisions as Public Policy in Alberta’s City-Regions

1
Department of Political Science, University of Alberta, 10-16 HM Tory Bldg., Edmonton, AB T6G 2H4, Canada
2
Freelance Scholar, Edmonton, AB T6G 2H4, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Martin J. Bull
Received: 5 May 2016 / Revised: 30 August 2016 / Accepted: 21 September 2016 / Published: 27 September 2016
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [219 KB, uploaded 27 September 2016]

Abstract

For local governments in city-regions, the term “dispositional immobility” can be applied in situations where the question of municipal restructuring becomes an arena for permanent public policy non-decisions. Disposition is here used to mean both the inherent qualities of persons and communities, and the arrangement of the structures within an area. It is argued that administrative stasis results as dispositional immobility creates tactical political barriers to innovation, and policy inaction becomes a deliberate response. In Alberta, city-regions since the 1950s have preserved multiple autonomous municipalities rather than initiating centripetal reforms as is the case elsewhere in Canada. An analysis of the province and its leadership during the past half-century suggests reasons for this entrenched dispositional immobility within the institutional culture of Alberta’s city-regions. Our conclusion suggests that the time has come to rethink and challenge the long-standing and unquestioned continuation of the city-regional structural status quo. View Full-Text
Keywords: city-region governance; policy non-decision; dispositional immobility; Canadian city government; policy inertia; policy innovation city-region governance; policy non-decision; dispositional immobility; Canadian city government; policy inertia; policy innovation
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Lightbody, J.; Kline, L. Dispositional Immobility: An Analysis of Non-Decisions as Public Policy in Alberta’s City-Regions. Soc. Sci. 2016, 5, 54.

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