Narratives on Complexity: Interpretations on Local Government Leadership Change

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Arto Haveri, Henna Paananen Jenni Airaksinen

Abstract

This article, based on narratives of experienced (born between 1945 and 1950) municipal chief executive officers, investigates changes that challenge leadership inlocal government. Four factors emerge: the dissolution of municipal boundaries; cooled relations between the State and municipalities; municipal inhabitants’ changing role from participatory residents to exacting customers; and fragmentation oflocal politics. These four changes reveal the diversity of local leaders’ everyday environment, illustrating and exploring how day-to-day management takes place in the intersection of more and more complex governance relations.

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Author Biographies

Arto Haveri,

Dr. Arto Haveri is a professor of Local Government Studies at the School of Management, University of Tampere. He focuses on management and leadership issues of local government, inter-governmental relations and governance. He also maintains an interest in problems of administrative reform design and evaluation, particularly in areas of local and regional government and regional development. E-mail:arto.haveri@uta.fi. Tel: +358401904020

Henna Paananen, University of Tampere

Henna Paa nanen M.Sc. (Adm in.), works as a university teacher in the School of Management, University of Tampere, Finland. She teaches research methods in the degree programme of administrative studies, and prepares her doctoral dissertation on leadership in local government. E-mail: Henna.Paananen@uta.fi. Tel: +358401904020

Jenni Airaksinen, Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities

Dr. Jenni Airaksinen works as a Director of research and development, in the Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities. She is currently studying issues around local government leadership, urban governance practices, administrative reforms and innovations of welfare services in the context of local governance. E-mail: jenni.airaksinen@kuntaliitto.fi. Tel: +358 50 5332002