Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


The purpose of this study is to outline and analyze the process leading to the signing of regional development agreements between the federal Department of Regional Economic Expansion (DREE) and the provinces of Saskatchewan and British Columbia. The agreements were signed as subsidiary to General Development Agreements (GDAs) entered into with each of the provinces. The study examines a series of these subsidiary agreements signed between 1974 and 1980 in order to determine some of the forces helping to shape regional policy, to characterize working relationships and to consider the implications of particular administrative structures and processes.;The research is based on an examination of DREE documents as well as on the transcripts of numerous interviews held with DREE and other federal officials. A model of the policy process has been employed to provide a framework for the analysis. The model presents the cognitive and coordinating dimensions of policy making as two distinct but interrelated continua. The process leading to the signing of subsidiary agreements is assessed in relation to these continua.;The study shows that federal policy making processes did reflect certain tendencies in respect of both cognitive and coordinating dimensions. In terms of the cognitive, policy analysis was constrained in its depth and breadth, tended to be more incremental than synoptic, participation in analytical activity was limited, and the rationale for initiatives was often more aimed at coping with, rather than solving, problems. In terms of coordination, processes in general tended to be haphazard, passive and to function without effective central monitoring or control. Bargaining was the principal coordinating instrument, one in which the provinces came to assume a dominant role.;With these characteristics as found in the formulation of agreements under the GDAs, it is evident that the approach did not meet expectations as a tool for facilitating comprehensive analysis and broad ranging coordination in regional development. The GDA approach did relatively little to ensure an integration of development goals between both levels of government. It is also concluded that administrative structures and processes themselves played a major role in shaping the policies which emerged. (Abstract shortened with permission of author.)



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