đź“–[PDF] Public Management in Global Perspective by Salvatore Schiavo-Campo | Perlego (2022)

About This Book

Written by two authors with a wide range of experience in international affairs, this introductory text addresses both the commonalities and diversity of administrative practice around the world, including a succinct but thorough overview of PA in the United States. It combines solid conceptual foundations with strong coverage of nuts-and-bolts "how to" topics, such as personnel management, procurement, and budgeting, and covers both developed countries and developing and transitional economies.The book's chapters are organized into four major sections: government functions and organization; management of government activity; interaction between government and citizens; and prospects of administrative reform. Plentiful illustrations and examples throughout the book, and "What to Expect" sections and discussion questions in each chapter, make this an ideal text for any PA course that takes a global perspective.

đź“–[PDF] Public Management in Global Perspective by Salvatore Schiavo-Campo | Perlego (1)

The times are changing, and we along with them.

—Ovid, 8 C.E.


Any discussion of the administration of the “public thing”—the ancient Roman res publica, from which “republic” is derived—must be predicated on the existence of some government legitimacy and some measure of legal and political accountability. The issue of the appropriate relationship between “policy” and “administration” is an old one. On the one hand, the policy question of “what” is to be done is different from the management question of “how” it is to be done. The distinction between the quality of the management instruments and the goals that they are meant to achieve is important. One can explain how to sharpen a knife without discussing whether it is to be used for peeling apples or chopping onions. Thus, this book discusses public administration issues mainly in their instrumental aspects. On the other hand, excessively hard boundaries between “policy” and “implementation” eventually lead to both unrealistic policies and bad implementation. Therefore, wherever appropriate, the discussion will shade into public policy issues and the interaction between public policy and public management.

But make no mistake—whatever the right mix of the “what” and the “how,” allowing public administration to be relegated to the backseat by the sexier issues of public policy invariably blows back to destroy the policy itself. A strategy paper without a roadmap is a paper, not a strategy; a decision without implementation is a wish, not a decision; a law without enforcement is a pantomime, not a law. Organized government, no matter how representative and democratic it may be, is utterly impotent without the instruments to carry out its will. This is the broad canvas of this book—tinted by the major trends of our time, from globalization to the resurgence of ethnicity and religion and the risk of regression to an apolar international system.

This overview chapter describes the main contemporary trends influencing public management in the United States and elsewhere in the world. The institutional and cultural context of public management is outlined next—including the all-important concept of governance—and the chapter concludes with setting out criteria for assessing and improving public administration. The basic themes and concepts introduced in this overview are embedded in the discussion of the various dimensions of public administration presented in the subsequent chapters.


Globalization: A Smaller Planet, Spinning Faster

Asking the Right Question

In late 2007, an internet search for “globalization” showed about 27 million entries (growing at the rate of about one million every three months). Yet, interdependence among individuals, among groups, among nations, has always been a reality—indeed, it has been the basis for the evolution of organized human society. Moreover, the increase in interdependence is not new. From as far back as the fourteenth century, global interdependence has been increasing because of the continuing reduction in “economic distance”—the cost of transferring goods, services, labor, capital, and information from one place to another—due to improvements in transport technology, tariff cuts, creation of international institutions, telecommunications and informatics, among other reasons. With that said, the acceleration witnessed in the last two decades has been spectacular. Thus, “globalization” is more than just a catchy term for an old phenomenon. There may be no difference in overall impact between, say, the invention of the railroad and that of the computer. However, the difference in degree and speed of impact is so vast as to constitute in effect a new phenomenon—particularly as it coincided with the rapid liberalization of external financial transactions that took place in most major countries. In Thomas Friedman’s expression, globalization has made the world flat (Friedman, 2005).

And so, let’s be clear about the key question. The genuine core of the globalization debate is not the continuing decrease in economic distance, per se, but the valid concern that in recent years economic distance has been shrinking faster than can be reasonably managed by the international system—let alone by an individual country. The foremost consequence of this disconnect between an integrated world economy and an un-integrated world political system is the lack of a functioning mechanism to address the problems of individuals, groups and countries on the losing end of the process.

Globalization and Public Administration

Globalization has an impact on most dimensions of public administration in most countries, and constrains the ability of national governments to act independently. Gone are the days when major decisions on the extent and manner of state intervention could be taken in isolation. The new reality is the imperative of considering the impact of those decisions on the outside world and the blowback from it. This reality cuts two ways. On the one hand, there is a new constraint on many governments’ ability to sustain inefficient economic policies; on the other hand, the implementation of government’s independent social policies and redistributive objectives is hampered as well.

Globalization is also changing the role of government by introducing a new source of insecurity at the same time as it has raised efficiency (particularly in North America but to an increasing extent in Europe as well). Not long ago, in most developed countries economic security was found largely in the workplace. With the employers’ market and sources of input supply fairly predictable, it was possible to provide employees with reasonable assurances of employment security and post-employment benefits. As markets have become globalized, and plants, input supply and jobs increasingly outsourced, uncertainty has increased substantially for both the employers and the employees. The employers have accordingly passed through much of that uncertainty to their employees, by larger, more frequent and less predictable layoffs, and by shedding as much as possible the cost of health insurance and retirement benefits. Individuals are thus coming to look more and more to the government for the economic security they used to enjoy in the private workplace. Conversely, in developing countries, people at the receiving end of the outsourced jobs are relying more and more on the private sector for gainful employment and rapid advancement. This trend is still at the beginning and its impact in different areas of administration cannot yet be clearly defined, but it will heavily influence the role of government and the modalities of public administration for the foreseeable future.

Stopping the Tide?

Thus, the economic and social benefits from globalization can be immense, but the costs and risks can be high as well, and the distribution of costs and risks among individuals, groups and countries is different from the distribution of benefits. Globalization also has an impact on the concentration of economic power between and within countries. The answer to this problem is not a retreat into national isolation or a weakening of international rules—quite the opposite. It is as impossible to reverse the globalization process as it would be to make television or the internet disappear. Indeed, efforts at reversing globalization may even be counterproductive, because they divert attention from the need to counteract the possible negative impact of the globalization tendency on income distribution and effective competition. The analytical and operational challenge is to strengthen the international and regional management of the process, primarily to (1) slow down the external transmission of destructive developments in any one country; (2) prevent overreaction; and (3) protect vulnerable groups and countries from carrying the brunt of the adjustment and being left farther and farther behind.

Finally, it is well to remember that globalization is a two-way channel, making it much easier to transmit internationally both positive and negative changes. For example, not only jobs and technology have been globalized, but crime as well. A recent book (Naim, 2006) provides analysis and illustrations of the new phenomenon of drug traffickers and other organized criminals operating globally—see Box 1.1.

Decentralization: A Double Squeeze on Central Government

Gone, too, are the days when central administration had the virtual monopoly of state power. As economic distance between any two areas is reduced, the space for the center naturally shrinks. Globally, the nation-state occupies the center, and the reduction in economic distance from the rest of the world has meant a loss in effective national administrative autonomy. But central governments have been squeezed from below as well. The greater mobility of persons and goods and the ease of communication and information flows have brought several public activities within effective reach of local government. Combined with a stronger civil society and a more assertive population, these developments have led to pressures on the center to “download” onto local government both authority and resources.

As an overall trend, internal decentralization may be as unstoppable as globalization. At the same time, however, decentralization of certain functions generates the need for greater centralization of other functions (or for stronger central supervision). Moreover, the need to meet the challenges of globalization is itself a factor making for centralization of state power. The vector resulting from the contrasting forces of centralization and decentralization will of course differ in different countries. In the United States, the post-9/11 perception of major threats to national security and the push to combat and reverse what some view as an erosion of basic values have enabled a recentralization of power in the federal government. Only time and the political choices of the American people will tell whether this signals a new trend or is a temporary blip—with a return to the long-term trend toward decentralization as soon as the largely fabricated sense of insecurity wanes. In Europe, by contrast, there has been a voluntary uploading of substantial powers from the component member-states to the European Union as a supranational entity. (But in Europe, too, a backlash has been evident in recent years.)

BOX 1.1

The Seamy Underbelly of Globalization

The last decade has seen a mushrooming of international networks of illicit activities. These comprise more than the “traditional” smuggling and drug trafficking, and include transport of illegal migrants, trade in women and children for prostitution (up to and including slavery), money laundering, pirated movies and counterfeit software, trade in human organs and endangered animals, weapons—anything on which profitable international trade has been made possible by the extraordinary advances in information and communications technology. It is estimated that the total value of “production” by these crime networks is as high as 10 percent of the world economy.

These crime networks are extremely efficient—flat, decentralized, fluid, and adaptable. They navigate in the interstices of the international system, are interconnected, and can form, mutate, merge, split, and recombine very quickly to adapt to changes in the “market.” These networks are already distorting global trade and financial flows and are increasingly capable of capturing small and weak states. There is also considerable crossover between the criminal and the terrorist networks. (Concerning the latter, it is critical to make a distinction between groups with a legitimate or at least definable political agenda and those whose sole goal is to destroy and create instability.)

Because of the global reach of the new crime networks, it is extremely difficult for any single country to counteract them effectively, and an effective response would have to be equally global. Ideally, this would call for the creation of a truly multilateral public entity with the mandate, autonomy, and resources to meet this new challenge. A partial move in this direction has been made by the European Union, where since 1999 the judicial authorities in one country may order an arrest based on a warrant issued in another European country and may also seize evidence requested by judges in another country and transmit it to them. Even in Europe, however, national governments have balked at further integration of their criminal justice systems.

At a minimum, far better and systematic communication is needed between national security agencies and the international police organization INTERPOL. Considering the difficulties in communicating even between security agencies of the same country (e.g., the well-known “territorial” mentality of the FBI and other police agencies in the United States), this will not be easy. However, the increased effectiveness of international law enforcement and the genuine improvement in national security all around will be well worth the cost of the effort.

Source: Partly based and adapted from Naim (2006) and The Economist, “Charlemagne,” September 30, 2006.

Hence, instead of arguing about decentralization or centralization, in the current context it is more useful to ask:

• which functions are suitable for greater decentralization (and which are not);

• what is needed to make decentralization of the suitable functions effective; and

• what modifications in central government role are necessary to protect the country and vulnerable groups from the risks and costs of decentralization.

The reader can see the close parallel between globalization and decentralization. Like globalization, decentralization carries a potential for large overall benefits as well as risks and losses for the more vulnerable areas and groups. The management of decentralization within a country therefore calls for strong national action, just as the management of globalization requires strong international action.

Moreover, the intermediate administrative space is shrinking internally as well as internationally. Until the middle of the twentieth century, the intermediate level of government (the “state” in federal systems such as the United States’ or the “province” in unitary systems such as France’s) typically enjoyed a double monopoly position: as sole interpreter of government policy vis-...

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APA 6 Citation

Schiavo-Campo, S., & McFerson, H. (2014). Public Management in Global Perspective (1st ed.). Taylor and Francis. Retrieved from https://www.perlego.com/book/1563299/public-management-in-global-perspective-pdf (Original work published 2014)

Chicago Citation

Schiavo-Campo, Salvatore, and Hazel McFerson. (2014) 2014. Public Management in Global Perspective. 1st ed. Taylor and Francis. https://www.perlego.com/book/1563299/public-management-in-global-perspective-pdf.

Harvard Citation

Schiavo-Campo, S. and McFerson, H. (2014) Public Management in Global Perspective. 1st edn. Taylor and Francis. Available at: https://www.perlego.com/book/1563299/public-management-in-global-perspective-pdf (Accessed: 14 October 2022).

MLA 7 Citation

Schiavo-Campo, Salvatore, and Hazel McFerson. Public Management in Global Perspective. 1st ed. Taylor and Francis, 2014. Web. 14 Oct. 2022.

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