Techniques and paradoxes in performing performance measurements: concluding reflections

Henman, Paul (2016) Techniques and paradoxes in performing performance measurements: concluding reflections. Policy Studies, 37 6: 597-609. doi:10.1080/01442872.2016.1190447

Author Henman, Paul
Title Techniques and paradoxes in performing performance measurements: concluding reflections
Journal name Policy Studies   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1470-1006
Publication date 2016-11-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1080/01442872.2016.1190447
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 37
Issue 6
Start page 597
End page 609
Total pages 13
Place of publication Abingdon, Oxon, United Kingdom
Publisher Routledge
Language eng
Subject 3320 Political Science and International Relations
Abstract Performance measurement has an implicit performance theory embedded within its practice; performance measurement perforce performs. Performance measurement has a performative effect on performance. Drawing together and building on the various empirical observations from the preceding papers in this collection, this concluding paper firstly examines the circumstances in which performance measurement performs, that is, when it produces ‘authentic’ performance improvements, compared to when performance measurements misfire. The paper secondly explores several paradoxes of performance measurement – such that performance measurement measures only part of the performance it seeks to be performative on, incentives to perform incentivise poor performance and so on. These paradoxes, contradictions and ironies must be apprehended and appreciated in discovering, discerning and deciphering the diverse dynamics of measuring performance. They also demonstrate that analysing and working with performance measurement requires a perspective that eschews absolutes and clear directions, and embraces the uneasy and potentially destabilising tension of Escher’s performative art.
Keyword Governance
Performance measurement
Performance paradox
Policy instrument
Sociology of methods
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: HERDC Pre-Audit
School of Social Science Publications
Version Filter Type
Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 0 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article
Scopus Citation Count Cited 0 times in Scopus Article
Google Scholar Search Google Scholar
Created: Tue, 11 Oct 2016, 10:33:38 EST by System User on behalf of Learning and Research Services (UQ Library)