Making the governance of public bodies work: chair-chief executive relationships in practice

David Heald, David Steel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)
7 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

The importation, over the last 30 years, of private sector governance mechanisms into public sector bodies at arm’s-length from government has brought greater focus on the relationship of part-time Non-Executive Chairs and full-time Chief Executives. This paper explores this relationship in 14 UK public bodies, based on in-depth interviews with Chairs, Chief Executives and, as triangulation, Audit Committee Chairs. The findings concern: the negotiated differentiation of roles; the effects of the Chief Executive’s separate authority as Accounting Officer on internal governance; the management of external stakeholders; and how crises can affect roles and relationships. Improved processes of training and mentoring are proposed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)257-264
Number of pages8
JournalPublic Money & Management
Volume35
Issue number4
Early online date13 May 2015
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Keywords

  • Public sector corporate governance
  • Chair-Chief Executive relationships
  • Accounting Officer
  • public bodies
  • quangos

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