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Civil Service System Development in the Context of Building Local Governance Tony Verheijen, Senior Public Sector Specialist, The World Bank.

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Presentation on theme: "Civil Service System Development in the Context of Building Local Governance Tony Verheijen, Senior Public Sector Specialist, The World Bank."— Presentation transcript:

1 Civil Service System Development in the Context of Building Local Governance Tony Verheijen, Senior Public Sector Specialist, The World Bank

2 Outline Relevance of discussing civil service systems in the context of local governance Types of civil service systems and their relevance to local government Key issues in building civil service systems in Post-Communist states

3 The relevance of civil service systems Design of civil service systems can facilitate or hinder capacity development at local level: –Key questions to be considered: Restricted or inclusive definition of the civil service system? What is the relation between employment conditions for civil and public service? Does the civil service system include local government employees? Is the system limited to local state administration or are employees of local self-governing authorities included? What are the provisions governing mobility and remuneration?

4 Integrated vs. separated civil service systems Clarification of definitions: –Fully integrated systems include local self- governing authorities, but not necessarily public service employees (education, health sector etc.) –Separation of public and civil service has become a generally accepted practise –Discussion on civil service is increasingly focusing on defining the core civil service

5 Advantages and disadvantages Integrated civil service systems have certain potential advantages….. –Relatively beneficial for local government employees: possible benefits are more significant at local level –Opportunities for mobility make local government more attractive –Professional standards enforced across all levels of government

6 ……but also disadvantages –Infringes on the independence of local self-government –Imposes high cost on local governments –Lack of control over salary cost, takes away managerial flexibility –Risk of ‘brain drain’ if mobility is one way

7 Important to note: Relative importance of advantages and disadvantages depends on structure of self-governing authorities (size of the basic units) and local revenue raising ability

8 Partially integrated systems Covering local state administration only Advantages: –Allows for rotation between levels of administration –Provides quality control for local state administration staff Disadvantages: –Potentially weakens local self-governing authorities

9 Emerging model Core civil service across levels of government Rationale: –Limiting the high start-up cost of creating a civil service system –Flexibility combined with career opportunities for talented staff –More competitive remuneration for core civil servants –Definition of civil service ‘level-based’ rather than ‘employer-based’

10 Defining boundaries Rationale –Exercise of public authority –Managerial responsibility –Policy responsibility vs. operational responsibility –Limited experience with defining criteria across levels of government

11 Integrated systems ‘tested’ in Europe and CIS states Kazakhstan (in progress) Lithuania (implementation abandoned in 2002) Both mainly inclusive: –broad definition of civil service –attempting to include local self- governing authorities

12 Desirability of integrated systems The design of the system is the key issue: –Remuneration system –Quality control: framing co-operation between different levels –Mobility system: one way or both ways? Feasibility of creating integrated systems depends on the administrative structure of the state (size of basic units of self- government)

13 Key choices in civil service system development Key distinctions: –Internal Labour Market: Career systems vs. position systems –Centralised or decentralised management –Definition of the politico-administrative interface –Representative Civil Service or Elite Civil Service –Socialisation system (training, on the job learning, etc.)

14 Classical Career System Employment conditions generally defined by law High degree of distinction between civil service and private sector employment conditions (better pension provisions, job security for lower salaries) General competition as the main form of recruitment Administration divided in bodies of generalists and specialists Automatic advancement to the highest level in class/category, based on seniority and performance Progress to higher class/category mainly through internal examination

15 Classical Position System Civil service employment conditions close to those prevailing in the private sector No exceptional job guarantees Mainly targeted recruitment of specialists No automatic advancement up to a certain level Administration often fragmented

16 Management system Centralised system Networked system Decentralised system

17 Centralised system Key feature: Central Unit manages recruitment, promotion, dismissal based on input from line units High degree of coherence in the system Limited scope for ‘favouritism’ Promotes horizontal mobility in the system Can complicate the socialisation process Limits flexibility

18 Networked system Key features –Central unit defines and monitors procedures and trains recruitment units –Central unit trains personnel units and keep registry –Actual selection, promotion and dismissal decisions with the line ministries/administrative units Issues to consider –Requires strong personnel offices able to cope with the requirements of dual subordination –Failure of real network development can lead to the disintegration of the system

19 Decentralised system Key feature: central rules exist but no central enforcement mechanism Issues to consider: –Level of discretion for ministries risks uneven implementation –Requires a strong commitment to the rules and regulations by all actors –Differing interpretations of rules can lead to a de facto system collapse

20 Politico-Administrative relations Lack of regulated Politico-Administrative interface can have fatal consequence for administrative stability Four main prevailing models for regulating the interface: –Banning political activity of civil servants –Reliance on mutual restraint –Defined political ‘zone’ in the administration –Political appointees placed in political cabinets outside the hierarchy

21 Representative vs. elite civil service Relates to: –Perception of the role of the state (paternalistic or laissez-faire) –Structure of Society (egalitarian or class based) Ways to promote representativeness: –affirmative action (quota etc.) –change of entry system (take out bias of examinations)

22 Socialisation models Two distinct approaches: –Socialisation mainly through learning on the job –Socialisation mainly through training

23 Development of training capacities Crucial to public administration at all levels Key questions: –How to integrate training in staff development –How to build capacities to assess training needs –How to frame the delivery system

24 Training and staff development Overcoming reluctance by creating incentives –Training Plans as an integral part of career development –Mandatory budget percentages for staff development

25 Training needs assessment Requires strong networks of personnel offices, at central and at local level Capacity development on training needs assessment required at all levels In relations to the state administration government, requires a strong central resource unit to support personnel offices In relation to local self-government, requires a support unit in the association of local authorities Relevant training policies to be developed for central and local government on the basis of initial assessments

26 Delivery systems Market-based systems vs. state systems –Market-based: how to ensure relevant tailor-made programmes in markets with limited competition? –State sector: how to safeguard efficiency and relevance

27 Emerging models National and regional training institutions covered by the state: –As main providers of training –As instruments for channelling training needs and sub-contracting delivery Network of private and quasi- governmental training institutions

28 The special context of Post-Communist states The legacy of the previous regime: –Administration as a key instrument of suppression –Parallel bureaucracy and the supremacy of the Party –Competing institutions: fragmentation and duplication –Employment conditions: elimination of differences between public and private sector, labour code applied to all –Highly centralised system: double subordination

29 Results Lack of policy-making and co-ordination capacities in the administration Labour code regime left sufficient room for ‘hiring and firing’ High degree of suspicion of the administration in society and among new political forces Tradition of impartial administration eliminated

30 Administrative reform and development Initial Phase: Incremental change brings further decay to already weakened systems –Volatile political climate left little possibility for comprehensive reform packages or adoption of key legislation –Limited attempts at institution building in the area of training (Poland, Slovakia, Romania) –Start of institution building process in new states (Baltic States, Slovakia, Slovenia, most NIS), but often still incremental in nature

31 Administrative reform and development Second phase: …… Gradual change in approach to public administration development –Civil service systems put in place in a majority of states –Consistent implementation and observance of rules a key problem across the board –Broad definition of systems limits the scope for providing incentives –Bonus systems either dysfunctional or not transparent (e.g. Latvia in the late 1990s)

32 Management systems remain weak: –Personnel function is the weak link –Central management units do not have the required power and stature –Politicisation remains a key disease in emerging systems (with few exceptions) –Training systems remain underdeveloped


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