Measuring the spatial effectiveness of Public Administrative Systems
Wilkins, John Kenneth
Geography can be a useful component in the government planning process. However, a more meaningful and comprehensive approach to planning the geography of public administration is required. In particular, concepts and measures of spatial effectiveness, a geographical quality indicating how adequately an administrative system fulfills the spatial attributes of public goals, should be defined and applied. The intention here is to examine the mechanism for measuring the spatial effectiveness of a public administrative system. This is attempted in a case study of the Manitoba Department of Health and Social Development's delivery of Income Security Services through the Winnipeg Regional Office System. The research reveals that more comprehensive measures of spatial effectiveness, embracing elements of accessibility and the population in need of services, should be devised. It is also concluded that these measures should only be proferred as initial indicators for planning purposes due to inherent assumptions and limitations. In the case study, it is recommended that the Manitoba Department of Health and Social Development pursue data reform, comparative evaluation and more rigorous geographical planning. This research is only suggested as a starting point for further geographical studies and government planning.