Why Go Democratic

Why Go Democratic

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This study examines the civil service systems adopted in the post-communist Central and Eastern European democracies. While these new democracies underwent a process of civil service reform with the goal of increasing the level of bureaucratic professionalism and efficiency, civil service performance varies greatly in the region. Motivated by this empirical puzzle, this work answers two main questions: (1) What do the civil service systems created through civil service laws look like? and (2) In the absence of differences in institutional design, why do administrative apparatuses function better in certain countries than in others? In response to the first question, by using original data, this study finds that the formal provisions that regulate the civil service systems (as stipulated in civil service laws) differ only marginally across countries, establishing institutions which display primarily elements of professionalism and independence from political interference. Using four case studies, I answer the second question by taking into account the interplay between party competition and the modernization of state bureaucracy. In countries with party systems that display signs of institutionalization (e.g., low fragmentation and low volatility), there is little political patronage, as party competition is able to constrain cronyism. In the absence of political patronage, the civil service is filled with professionals chosen on a meritocratic basis, which enhances the system's overall quality. In contrast, countries with underinstitutionalized party systems (e.g., high fragmentation and high volatility) cannot rely upon party competition to constrain patronage politics. In such countries, the civil service is saturated with politically motivated appointments, undermining the level of professionalism in the entire system.Civil Service Reform in Central and Eastern Europe Angelica Ghindar ... of interest; (3) civil servants do not benefit from special compensation schemes under a Labor Code regime, which makes them more susceptible to external influences;anbsp;...

Title:Why Go Democratic
Author:Angelica Ghindar
Publisher:ProQuest - 2009


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