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“Our Lives Are Affected by Government Agenciesâ€: Citizens’ Perception Survey as a Measure of Public Service Efficiency in Ghana

Bernard Gumah and Maxwell A. Aziabah

SAGE Open, 2020, vol. 10, issue 2, 2158244020935900

Abstract: Efficiency in public service delivery is critical in enhancing and improving the quality of citizens’ lives. Conversely, inefficient public service delivery has profound adverse effects on the quality of citizens’ lives. In the theory of public services efficiency, direct citizens’ surveys are a useful tool for measuring efficiency in public services. Our core consideration is the impact on human life, which is viewed as a function of the efficiency of public services delivered. We rely on the Ghana Living Standards Survey data to show that analytic leverage can be gained in gauging public perceptions of public services delivery using a perception index through the application of a comparative analytic design. Our results show that differences exist in the perceptions of efficiency and inefficiency among essential and auxiliary services, and such differences have also been found to mirror the spatio-economic attributes of citizens. We argue that public services can positively affect lives through a combination of policy measures spanning increased fight against corruption, improved funding, enhanced monitoring, and increased institutional capacity for improved expansion in physical presence, quality, and the visibility of public services.

Keywords: citizens’ perceptions; public services; efficiency; inefficiency; rural-urban dichotomy (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1177/2158244020935900

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