Insegnamento a.a. 2017-2018



Department of Social and Political Sciences

Course taught in English

Go to class group/s: 31
CLMG (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/07) - M (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/07) - IM (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/07) - MM (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/07) - AFC (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/07) - CLEFIN-FINANCE (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/07) - CLELI (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/07) - ACME (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/07) - DES-ESS (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/07) - EMIT (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/07) - GIO (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/07)
Course Director:

Classes: 31 (I sem.)

Course Objectives

All major relevant public issues (migrations, global warming, transportation, economic development, welfare services, etc.) are embedded in relevant inter-institutional interdependencies. Public managers, tackling those issues, needs to act as network managers. The course aims to analyze public sector networks, involving public, private and third sector organizations, at local, regional, national and international level. The course intends to evaluate the existing interdependencies, to assess critically networks governances and functioning modes in order to provide students with tools to re-design them. In some scenarios Public Administrations play the parent organization role, in other they act as pivot of the game, in the remaining they are peer to all others: governance structures and steering tools need to be adapted and contextualized. The public network framework is applied to diverse and heterogeneous policy fields (culture, utilities, waste, transportation, health and social care, social housing, etc.) in order to generalize the proposed approach. One of the main objectives is to distinguish network design and building, from network functioning and steering and from inter-institutional conflict and crisis management. The course matches traditional lectures, case discussions with interviews to public networks managers run by the class students, from the national and international landscape.

Course Content Summary

The course is divided in two parts: the first one based on traditional lectures and case discussion with the main instructor (2/3 of the lessons); the second one based on public networks managers’ presentations and interviews managed by students (1/3 of the lessons).
  • Analyze in diverse public policy domains the emergent inter-institutional interdependencies.
  • Define and classify public networks and related social capital and institutional trust
  • Present a framework to define the boundaries of public networks, their mission and competences.
  • Analyze public sector networks building and possible inter-connection and governance structures.
  • Framing the allocation of different public functions in any policy field: services regulation, planning, purchasing, provision, control.
  • Presenting different possible provision architectures within networks (peer, hub and spoke, pendulum, etc.).
  • Analyzing the portfolio of tools to steer or influence public networks.
  • Discuss the coordination and litigation management modes.

Detailed Description of Assessment Methods

For attending students
  • Written exam based on 4-5 open questions about the contents presented in class and the papers available in the course learning space.
  • Preparing a paper about a public network case and discussing it with the instructor. The paper should be about 15-20 pages long, and present an assessment of interdependencies, governance structures and functioning modes of a public relevant case, providing an evaluation of the adopted managerial solutions and suggesting possible changes for better performances.
Attendance is valid for all exam sessions of the academic year.

For non attending students
Written exam based on 4-5 open questions related to an extended version of the course papers selection.


A collection of international scientific papers selected by the instructor available on the course learning space

Exam textbooks & Online Articles (check availability at the Library)


Last change 07/04/2017 11:26