Online from: 1988
Subject Area: Industry and Public Sector Management
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|Title:||Mapping the spatial patterns of public procurement: A case study from a peripheral local authority in Northern England|
|Author(s):||Ignazio Cabras, (Centre for Regional Economic Development, University of Cumbria, Carlisle, UK)|
|Citation:||Ignazio Cabras, (2011) "Mapping the spatial patterns of public procurement: A case study from a peripheral local authority in Northern England", International Journal of Public Sector Management, Vol. 24 Iss: 3, pp.187 - 205|
|Keywords:||Local authorities, Public procurement, Public sector accounting, Small to medium-sized enterprises|
|Article type:||Research paper|
|DOI:||10.1108/09513551111121338 (Permanent URL)|
|Publisher:||Emerald Group Publishing Limited|
|Acknowledgements:||This paper is based on a study conducted on behalf of the Cumbria Procurement Group (now EPiC – Effective Procurement in Cumbria). The author is grateful to Mary J. Clark, Frank Peck and two anonymous referees for their useful comments and feedback. He remains, however, solely responsible for the accuracy of information and the interpretations provided in the paper.|
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to investigate public procurement activity within the Cumbria County Council and its effects on the local supply chain. The paper seeks to identify the role of public procurement within the county, in relation to the propensity for income retention (or leakage) at local level. In addition, the paper seeks to consider issues related to public procurement in peripheral and rural areas, with particular reference to small and medium businesses operating in Cumbria, and to provide a spatial analysis of money flows at regional and national level.
Design/methodology/approach – Quantitative data, from primary and secondary sources, were obtained from a survey questionnaire conducted among the Council's suppliers and from SpikesCavell, an agency specializing in collecting procurement data, respectively. The study focuses on public sector suppliers. It analyses suppliers' attributes and characteristics such as size, location and sector of activity are used in order to explore suppliers' patterns of spend in relation to inward and outward cash-flows within the County. Additionally, the paper explores the effects of the local authority's procurement in terms of advantages/disadvantages for the local supply chain.
Findings – The paper highlights the ability of competitive tendering systems to achieve cash saving and reduce wastage; but questions whether the adoption of such systems in the public sector produces positive economic effects on the local supply chain in peripheral and remote areas.
Originality/value – There is a lack of research on the impact of public procurement at regional and sub-regional level and its significance as a source of income and businesses operating within local supply chains. This paper seeks to contribute to filling this research gap by presenting and analysing data associated with procurement activity within a peripheral local authority.
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