1. bookVolume 17 (2021): Issue s1 (October 2021)
Journal Details
First Published
16 Apr 2015
Publication timeframe
2 times per year
access type Open Access

Centralisation in one step. Centralisation and decentralisation in Hungary from a public services perspective

Published Online: 22 Oct 2021
Volume & Issue: Volume 17 (2021) - Issue s1 (October 2021)
Page range: 703 - 728
Journal Details
First Published
16 Apr 2015
Publication timeframe
2 times per year

It is very difficult to group countries and state structures according to the extent of their decentralisation or the model they follow in the spatial distribution of power.

The strengthening of local municipalities and the almost continuous evolution of their role reflects the steady downsizing of public services provided by the state and the extension of market circumstances. Until the economic crisis in 2008, the importance of state redistribution increased in almost each of the developed countries, more and more nation state functions were centralised under the authority of international organisations, and the “curtailment” of national governments’ authority occurred in tandem with the strengthening of the local state, i.e. municipalities.

The study exploring the issue of centralisation and decentralisation does not seek to unearth the relationship between the two concepts, but to examine from the point of view of consumer satisfaction how such a hastily implemented reform is able to respond to consumer demands.

It also examines how those concerned by the financial and political changes, i.e. the population perceived this most important structural transformation of the period since the transition in 1989. Can it be verified from the consumers’ point of view that the transformation of the local municipal system improves the quality of service provision? The study reviews the process and social reception of the largest-scale administrative reform in Hungary post-1989 (with a primary focus on public services) using data from an extensive survey (representative of settlement type and sociode-mographic variables).


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