Through a metaphorical use of language, this statement highlights the shift from the traditional model of public administration's model of bureaucracy (an organization typified by formal processes, standardization, and hierarchic procedures and written communication) to the New Public Management, whose basis is lessening differences between the public and the private sector. I will define these terms more precisely throughout the essay. Before I discuss the merit of this statement, I will make clear the basis for my judgment. As a French student, I will especially draw upon the recent French reforms which showed a number of marked shifts in the direction of New Public Management. Here I will define terms and explain the significance of the statement. First, I will explain why the traditional model of public administration is being criticized for the bureaucratic system it requires.
[...] The public sector has a political environment, theoretical foundations and a culture which makes it distinctive from the private sector. A shift towards a bureaucratic appears improbable to me all the more so since it is not clear that the traditional model of public administration has collapsed everywhere, or to the same extent. Indeed, the term does not imply that New Public Management doctrines appeared for the first time in the 1980s. Many of them repackage ideas which have been in public administration since its earliest beginnings. [...]
[...] I think its weaknesses are placing bureaucracy at the core of the traditional model of public administration, suggesting that a move into a post-bureaucratic era is actually taking place and claiming that New Public Management has undefined goals. First, I believe that the core of the traditional model of public administration is Wilson's politics/administration dichotomy rather than bureaucracy. According to the dichotomy, political leaders, elected by voters to represent their interests, make all the important decisions. Public managers simply carry out the directive of the politicians. [...]
[...] A good feedback system could certainly provide a bureaucracy and its bureaucrats with specific and useful information on their performance, providing an avenue and a direction for change. That is the reason why New Public Management aims at imparting a shift from a stress on process to a stress on output. New Public Management is seen as a global reform movement that has occurred over the past two decades in a great number of OECD countries (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development). It finds virtue in a reduction in the size and scope of bureaucracy based on private sector management methods. [...]
[...] Hood (1991) felt that there were seven main points to the New Public Management agenda: ‘hands-on professional management', ‘explicit standards and measures of performance', ‘greater emphasis on output controls', a ‘shift to disaggregation of units in the public sector', ‘stress on greater discipline and parsimony in resource use', a ‘shift to greater competition in the public sector and ‘private sector styles management practices'. The statement suggests that are moving into a post-bureaucratic where signposts are being taken down”. Indeed, in order to achieve the performance measures for which they are now accountable, managers need to be liberated from routines and regulation by the various administrative systems. [...]
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