Conducting a Dissonant Symphony: A Case Study of Network Leadership in the National Quality Forum
Hoflund, Amy Bryce
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Networks are an increasingly common aspect of administrative life in almost any policy arena. In 1999 the health care industry created the National Quality Forum, a network administrative organization, whose founding mission was to improve American healthcare through endorsement of consensus-based national standards for measurement and public reporting of healthcare performance data that provide meaningful information about whether care is safe, timely, beneficial, patient-centered, equitable and efficient. The NQF is representative of a network administrative organization because it was created to address issues of health care quality in a new way by bringing together organizations from the public and private sectors and providing them with a forum to discuss and debate measures of quality, and ultimately, to effect change. The NQF thus represents a major administrative experiment in addressing health policy issues. In spite of the popularity of networks, little is known about a network managerâ s or, more appropriately for this dissertation, a network entrepreneurâ s critical tasks in creating a network administrative organization. The purpose of this dissertation is to present the results of an empirical study of the critical leadership tasks of the NQFâ s President and CEO during the NQFâ s formative stages. This dissertation identifies and conceptualizes three critical leadership tasks of the NQFâ s President and CEO: defining the NQFâ s mission, building and maintaining the NQFâ s social base, and creating the NQFâ s Consensus Development Process. In addition, this dissertation proposes a series of testable hypothesis based on these three critical tasks that can be used for exploring leadership in other NAOs. The findings indicate that leadership is crucial to the formation of a network administrative organization and fills a gap in our understanding of network management by developing the concept of network leadership and exploring the critical tasks a leader undertakes during the formative stages of building an NAO like the NQF.
- Doctoral Dissertations 
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