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Between incrementalism and punctuated equilibrium: the case of budget in Poland, 1995–2018

Wordliczek Lukasz
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Wordliczek Lukasz: Institute of American Studies and Polish Diaspora, Jagiellonian University, Krakow, Poland

Central European Journal of Public Policy, 2021, vol. 15, issue 2, 14-30

Abstract: Incrementalism and punctuated equilibrium theory (PET) have secured their standing in public policy research when studying change in budgetary data. On the other hand, however, new empirical evidence is constantly developed to confront it with theoretical assumptions. In line with the above, the aim of the paper is threefold. First, it is examined if budgetary outlays in Poland follow either incrementalism or PET's core premises. Second, the paper aims at facilitating discussion on identifying punctuations. It is claimed that any cut-off point should be data-driven, category-responsive, and generalizable across different types of outliers. And third, it is investigated which of the budget categories have the most punctuations. Methodologically, the study is based on descriptive and distributional statistics provided to tackle the above two issues comprehensively. Consequently, the paper aims at filling the gap in theory-driven literature on Polish budget shifts and their empirical rigorous explanations. Thus, it is claimed that the Polish case study contributes to the debate on the verification of empirical research on public policy agendas and public policy change.

Keywords: public policy; incrementalism; punctuated equilibrium theory; budget analysis; outlier detection (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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DOI: 10.2478/cejpp-2021-0007

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