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Managers’ Career Paths and Interlocal Collaboration: An Agent Network Collaboration Model

Journal Title Public Management Review
Published Date May 01, 2023
Research Type


This study examines the role of change agents, city leaders, and their networks in facilitating interlocal collaboration in environmental governance. We propose an Agent Network Collaboration (ANC) model that brings individual managers, as change agents, back into the study of the interlocal agreement (ILA). We argue that the leadership transfer networks, the collection of city managers’ career paths that connect cities, serve as an important channel for interlocal collaboration. With a dyadic panel data set of 14 cities in the Pearl River Delta region in China, we find substantive impacts of managers’ career paths on the formation of ILAs.