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Systems 2015, 3(3), 62-80; doi:10.3390/systems3030062

Dealing with Multi-Level Governance and Wicked Problems in Urban Transportation Systems: The Case of Palermo Municipality

Department of European Studies, University of Palermo, Via Ugo Antonio Amico 2-4, Palermo 90134, Italy
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Thomas V. Huynh
Received: 11 February 2015 / Revised: 2 May 2015 / Accepted: 23 June 2015 / Published: 30 June 2015
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Italian New Public Management (NPM) has been mainly characterized by a political orientation toward power decentralization to local governments and privatization of public companies. Nowadays, local utilities in Italy are often run by joint stock companies controlled by public agencies such as Regional and Municipal Administrations. Due to this transformation, these companies must comply with a set of diverse expectations coming from a wide range of stakeholders, related to their financial, competitive and social performance. Such fragmented governance increases the presence of “wicked” problems in the decision-making sphere of these entities. Given this multi-level governance structure, how do these agents influence public services performance? In recent years, coordination and inter-institutional joint action have been identified as possible approaches for dealing with governance fragmentation and wicked problems deriving from it. How can we adapt a performance management perspective in order to help us reform the system and so have a better collaboration between the stakeholders involved? In order to address and discuss these research questions, a case study will be developed. The case concerns AMAT, the local utility providing the public transportation service in the Municipality of Palermo (Italy). The result of this study is a dynamic model including a set of performance indicators that help us in understanding the impact of the governing structure on the system’s performance. View Full-Text
Keywords: multi-level governance; performance management; wicked problems; system dynamics multi-level governance; performance management; wicked problems; system dynamics

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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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Noto, G.; Bianchi, C. Dealing with Multi-Level Governance and Wicked Problems in Urban Transportation Systems: The Case of Palermo Municipality. Systems 2015, 3, 62-80.

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