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Policy Failure


Ineffectiveness of public policy; Policy failure


The inability of a public policy to achieve its goals, to get results that benefit – or at least do not harm – the population to which it should serve, to materialize the values and purposes promoted by its proponents, to give legitimity to the government, and to generate greater efficiency and/or effectiveness compared to other public policies that could have been implemented to cope with the same problem.


Latin America and the Caribbean


The expression of the failure of public policies is conceptually complex, because it has been used in an unsystematic and elastic manner to refer to different kinds of situations, results, consequences, and with some frequency, as an argument in political confrontation with the purpose of achieving support for a given cause or delegitimizing the initiatives of opponents (Zittoun 2015).

Furthermore, a public policy may have failed in some aspect or area in which...


  • Public Policy Failure
  • Transantiago
  • Human Teamwork
  • Policy Management Model
  • Established Goals

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Correspondence to Mauricio Olavarría-Gambi .

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Olavarría-Gambi, M. (2018). Policy Failure. In: Farazmand, A. (eds) Global Encyclopedia of Public Administration, Public Policy, and Governance. Springer, Cham.

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  • Print ISBN: 978-3-319-31816-5

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Chapter History

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    Policy Failure
    28 July 2018


  2. Original

    Policy Failure
    23 January 2017