Shrinking the quango state: Five challenges in reforming quangos

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  • Sheffield University


Some problems of governance regularly resurface, and the use and role of 'quangos'- public bodies operating at arm's-length to ministers-is a case in point. The administrative history of the British state is littered with official reviews and political debates about quangos. Historically, governments, whatever their reforming zeal, have found it difficult to make substantial changes. Now the UK government has initiated a rapid and large-scale set of reforms. This article analyses these changes and highlights five challenges for governments wishing to reform arm's-length bodies: mapping, assessing, reconfiguring, saving, and accounting.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)327-334
Number of pages8
JournalPublic Money & Management
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2012


  • quango, reform, public management, UK government