First Advisor

John E. O'Brien

Date of Publication


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Urban Studies


Urban Studies and Planning




Economic theory, Social work administration, Interorganizational relations, Communities



Physical Description

xi, 265 leaves 28 cm.


This dissertation addresses the following research question. Do the criteria by which organizations assess the benefits of entering into interagency agreements vary by city? Employing data obtained from 183 human service agencies in six western cities, organizational emphases on two classes of goals as they relate to the decision to interact with other agencies are assessed as functions of six organizational variables and city. The organizational variables include organizational goal, reliance on federal sources for funding, and a range of environmental uncertainty measures. The two classes of organizational goals studied are: first, those which directly accrue to the agency itself, and second, those which accrue directly to entities outside the organization. Findings suggest that while emphases on intraorganizational goals are invariant between cities, those pertaining to extra-organizational entities may well vary between locales. These findings bear theoretical implications for the future study of organizations, and practical implications for entities seeking to develop programs or regulations for application across broadly defined jurisdictions.


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Portland State University. School of Urban Affairs.

Persistent Identifier