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The Three R's of Reform

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We cannot understand the requirements of reform without sorting out what social objectives and values should be promoted by public policy. It would be a great mistake to take reform to be some means-centred, goal-independent institutional requirement that 'must be' pursued without asking any questions about how that institutional demand would influence the lives of the people that are involved. There may or may not be any payment-free lunch, but it would certainly be extremely odd to pursue ethics-free reform. If one were to be asked what three factors would be most important in the task of initiating and implementing a major reform, the factors to be emphasised would be three R's: reach, range, and reason. The reach of the results to be achieved, the range of the ways and means to be used, and the reason for choosing the priorities we pursue.

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