Across the world, the appropriate role of government in the planning and delivery of public services has been the subject of intense debate.
How should the state control the provision of public services and how far should markets be allowed to determine the provision of those services?
One answer to these questions is 'regulation' – ie, the creation of mechanisms that allow governments to influence the behaviour of autonomous service providers.
This report compares the regulatory framework in four health systems: the Autonomous Community of Catalonia in Spain, Germany, the Netherlands and New Zealand. This comparison is used to reflect on the future regulation of the NHS in England.