Even the smallest businesses know how important it is to listen to their customers. Yet in the public sector, after decades of efforts to reform government and promote greater citizen input, government ineffectiveness and insensitivity to public need still abounds. Can government ever be as attentive to citizens' needs as businesses are to consumer needs? The answer to how public services can adopt a more democratic and inclusive decision-making attitude, writes Michael Mintrom, associate profes…

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