New handbook on the Quality of Government summarizes 15 years of research


At the Quality of Government institute, research is conducted on how political institutions of high quality can be created and maintained. Now 15 years of research is summarized in a newly published handbook.

The quality of government has effects on a number of policy outcomes, such as human health, environment, economic growth, social welfare and poverty. Researchers at the QoG institute are interested in understanding how impartial, professional, competent and non-corrupt political institutions can be created and maintained

The interest in our field has grown rapidly in recent years and shows no signs of abating, so we decided that it was a good time to take stock on findings so far, says Monika Bauhr, one of the authors to the book.

The Oxford Handbook of the Quality of Government includes 38 chapters, written by world-leading scholars as well as young and upcoming scholars. They provide not only a review of the state-of-the-art of the work on QoG in different areas, but also critically discuss the findings, advance novel perspectives, identify gaps and point out future strands of research.

The introductory chapters focus on the theoretical approaches and debates, variation in definitions and conceptualizations, and the central question of how QoG can be measured.

A second set of chapters examine the wealth of empirical research on how QoG relates to democratic accountability, ethnic diversity, human well-being, economic growth, political legitimacy, environmental sustainability, gender equality, social cohesion, and the outbreak of civil conflicts.

A third set of chapters turns to the perennial issue of what contextual factors and policy approaches have proven successful (and not so successful) for increasing QoG.

– QoG research investigates impartiality in the exercise of public power, professionalism in public service delivery, and ways to contain corruption patronage, favoritism, and nepotism. The idea of this book is to go beyond merely presenting the state-of-the-art. It also aims to serve as an authoritative guide for scholars, including those interested in venturing into this r field of research, Monika Bauhr says.

The Oxford Handbook of the Quality of Government

Andreas Bågenholm, Monika Bauhr, Marcia Grimes, and Bo Rothstein (eds. 2021). The Oxford Handbook of the Quality of Government. Oxford University Press.

Link to the book: