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How public leaders can promote public value through co-creation

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  • 1 Roskilde University, Denmark and NORD University, , Norway
  • | 2 University of Minnesota, , USA
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Governance researchers are increasingly interested in how co-creation can contribute to promoting public value in contemporary liberal democracies. While many have already argued for the potential benefits of employing co-creation in government strategies aiming to enhance public value, few have considered the implications of such a strategy for public leadership. Drawing on recent strands of theory on leadership and management, we specify how public leaders can use co-creation as a tool to achieve policy goals, and we illustrate this specification by showing how politicians and public and non-profit managers perform the public leadership of co-created public value in Gentofte, Denmark and Minneapolis‒St Paul, USA. The main proposition is that this kind of public leadership does not only involve a strategic effort to engage, inspire and mobilise actors with relevant governance assets – including legitimacy, authority and capabilities – but also to align their understandings of what is valuable for the public.

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  • 1 Roskilde University, Denmark and NORD University, , Norway
  • | 2 University of Minnesota, , USA

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