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The involved researchers focus on today’s public sector institutions where working conditions are characterised by limited economic resources and a high degree of political vigilance resulting in frequent reforms and legislative revisions.

The network brings together scholars with disciplinary backgrounds in Anthropology, Political Science, Public Management, and Business Administration who shares a comparative and ethnographic approach to the study of public sector reform and development.

The key interests are: everyday work life, policy in practice, local interpretation, managing cross-pressure, and the effects of ‘change’ as a permanent condition.

legislative change and organisational reconfiguration have turned into a permanent condition for many public organisations. As a result the work lives of public employees are characterized by the need to reconcile and adapt to competing programs and constantly revised legislation

Little has been written about how public sector employees learn about the content of new acts and reforms; and how they navigate the various demands made of them and deliver their services within the framework of public organisations characterized by such perpetual change.

We aim 1) to examine the implications of reform and legislative revision as a permanent condition in the North European public sectors 2) to study the general and country-specific ways in which the civil services handle reform and change and 3) to question and broaden the predominantly economic understanding of the ‘effect’ and ‘impact’ of reforms