n Journal of Public Administration - The 'new public management' and public sector training in Africa

Special issue 3
  • ISSN : 0036-0767



This article explores the relationship between public administration reforms in Africa and the implications of such reforms for public sector training. More specifically, it considers the skills and capacity needs that arise from the implementation of New Public Management (NPM) interventions in public administration in Africa. Firstly, a brief overview of the conditions giving rise to the NPM reform agenda as well as unanticipated problematic outcomes of NPM is provided for contextualization. Secondly, the key theoretical ideological underpinnings of NPM are identified. Thirdly, the limitations on successfully implementing an NPM programme are discussed in order to show that lack of skills and capacity are but one factor among others. Fourthly, the training and skills needs associated with NPM are identified. Fifthly, a review of the track record of training in relation to public administration reform in Africa is made. In conclusion, the key observations arising out of this analysis are presented.

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