When are Public Services Successful?

How do we judge the quality of public services? That question is far trickier than it appears.

In some cases the answer seems simple enough: whether trains run on time. But is this really all we want from our trains?

Surely not. They should be safe, too, and reasonably comfortable. They should run not only on time, but at the right time and at reasonable intervals. More important still, they should be affordable. As the list of criteria grows longer, it becomes evident that the most easily measured component, punctuality, is but one of many desirable features, and not necessarily the most significant.

To continue reading, please log in or enter your email address.

To read this article from our archive, please log in or register now. After entering your email, you'll have access to two free articles every month. For unlimited access to Project Syndicate, subscribe now.

required

By proceeding, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy, which describes the personal data we collect and how we use it.

Log in

http://prosyn.org/ORXsoWw;

Cookies and Privacy

We use cookies to improve your experience on our website. To find out more, read our updated cookie policy and privacy policy.