"Proxies" and "Partners:" Relationships between Grant Givers and Grant Receivers in Federal Fellowship Programs

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Title: "Proxies" and "Partners:" Relationships between Grant Givers and Grant Receivers in Federal Fellowship Programs
Author: Shafer, David Michael
Advisors: James H. Svara, Committee Chair
Debra W. Stewart, Committee Member
Elizabethann O'Sullivan, Committee Member
Ellen S. Vasu, Committee Member
Abstract: The purpose of this research is to identify and analyze the factors that have an impact on implementation and effectiveness of intergovernmental grant programs at the grantee-level to enable grantors to better select, control and learn from their grantees. Data are collected via both annual and final performance reports, as well as an on-line survey from 1997 cohort U.S. Department of Education Graduate Assistance in Areas of National Need Fellowship grantees. A model is developed to assess the extent to which grantee capacity has an impact on implementation quality, and the extent to which grantee capacity and implementation quality taken separately have an impact on effectiveness. Grantee capacity consists of the following dimensions: human resources, size of graduate program, organizational level, and capacity to cope with Federal constraints. Implementation quality consists of two dimensions: regulatory conformity and innovativeness. Effectiveness consists of three dimensions: retention, candidacy rate and diversity. Using multiple regression analysis, the findings indicate that when controlling for the other variables in the model, organizational level has the strongest positive relationship, and number of personnel the strongest negative relationship with regulatory conformity. Both variables have the strongest positive relationship with innovativeness. Organizational level also has the strongest positive relationship with diversity and candidacy rate. That is, grantees that house grant administration at the college, university or combination of college, university and/or departmental levels are likely to be more effective, conforming and innovative than grantees that house grant administration solely at the departmental level. The quantitatively derived findings are then interpreted through the lenses of self-interested- and norm-based theories of administrative behavior. Using a combination of these perspectives, a two-by-two typology is developed that categorizes GAANN grantees as high-conforming partners, high-conforming proxies, low-conforming partners, and low-conforming proxies. Based on the assumptions underlying the typology, it is plausible that higher levels of innovativeness indicate a greater level of goal congruence between grantors and grantees. High conforming partners (i.e., grantees that are highly innovative and conforming) are the most effective in achieving programmatic objectives and are more likely to administer their grants at higher organizational levels than other grantee types.
Date: 2002-11-18
Degree: PhD
Discipline: Public Administration
URI: http://www.lib.ncsu.edu/resolver/1840.16/4690

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