Journal of Public Administration - Special issue 1, June 2014
Volumes & issues
Special issue 1, June 2014
Source: Journal of Public Administration 49, pp 563 –567 (2014)More Less
A robust early classification of political organisations was the influential grouping by Aristotle (384-322 BC) of the 158 Greek city states that had been in existence over the two preceding centuries. The diversity of the political arrangements offered Aristotle an ideal laboratory to consider which type of political system reflected what he saw as optimal government. Since then, the continuing debate on the role of government in society has taken many forms, extending, in particular, to the field of public administration. Within Africa, this debate has been rather intense, especially since the 1980s, as a result of the doctrines advanced by New Public Management (NPM) ideology which was based on market philosophies. The "African society", so-called, can be classified into geographical regions, but within them, as Huntington (1991:8) cautions, no political regime fits neatly into an intellectually defined box, and any system of classification must accept the existence of ambiguous, borderline and mixed cases. Seen in this perspective, there can be no monopoly of knowledge that would give scholars in a given region final authority in assessment of issues in their particular milieu. While it is important, and indeed beneficial, that views from scholars in other regions are welcome in such an issue to provide a range of templates for comparative analysis, this issue relies on articles incubated in the East African region, but with contributors having significant exposure in other jurisdictions.
Author G. MutahabaSource: Journal of Public Administration 49, pp 568 –590 (2014)More Less
The paper examines whether leadership, since pre-independence days, has contributed to improvements in the quality of governance and development in Tanzania. The paper interrogates the role of leadership in governance, development and social transformation both in Tanzania and in Africa more widely. The presented assessment suggests that the Tanzania polity (both state and society) during the colonial period and in much of the period since independence had a narrow conception of leadership in which leaders were understood merely as persons who hold positions that are linked to power. A different example of leadership was set, however, by Mwalimu Nyerere, a philosopher king figure, who had a vision for transforming the country using Ujamaa and charisma to sway the people and move with them. Even so, Tanzania is a large country, and Nyerere and the limited number of his converts were too few to reach all corners of Tanzanian society.
Source: Journal of Public Administration 49, pp 591 –602 (2014)More Less
Century-long theories on local governance demonstrate big achievements that range from efforts of improving efficiency and effectiveness in the local level service delivery to enormous participation and democratisation. Arguments of post-war reformers in the 1950s and relating to localists' hypotheses of the 1980s have indicated tremendous achievements in as far as attaining substantial local autonomy, pluralism and social- service provision are concerned.
The New Public Management approach, with a business customer service model, and the New Governance models, have had observable impacts on the local governments. Both local and central governments have been characterised by attempts to slow down government's growth in terms of overt public spending and staffing; shift towards privatisation, quasi-privatisation and away from core government institutions; renewed emphasis on 'subsidiarity' in service provision development of automation; and adopting a more international agenda on decision styles and intergovernmental cooperation. Participatory approaches in governance and democratisation through massive local pluralist elections and approaches towards local economic development are claims behind the current nature of developing countries' local politics. All these notwithstanding, observable trends indicate a possible stagnation of local governance in all spheres of local governance in Uganda. This paper therefore explores probable explanations for this phenomenon and suggests feasible solutions for re-shaping local service delivery approaches.
Author Y. OlumSource: Journal of Public Administration 49, pp 603 –621 (2014)More Less
The effective and efficient performance of Uganda's public service is critical in delivering goods and services demanded by the citizenry. Public officials, through their mandatory and discretionary powers, are expected to act in the public interest as they perform their roles and responsibilities. However, the glaring lack of professional ethics and accountability by some public officials prevents the public service machinery from contributing to good governance. All public officers, and especially those in senior and strategic leadership positions, should dedicate themselves to fulfilling the citizens' needs by being more accountable and transparent in the way they manage public resources. This, along with other critical measures, is essential if good governance is to be embedded in Uganda's public sector.
Institutions and food security : the contribution of community-based organisations in Kenya's rural areasSource: Journal of Public Administration 49, pp 622 –636 (2014)More Less
Food insecurity continues to plague Kenya's rural arid and semi-arid lands, which are vulnerable to market and climatic shocks. The majority of Kenya's population lives in rural areas and depends on agriculture for survival. However, the performance of the agricultural sector has been declining, leading to intermittent acute food shortages necessitating workable sustainable food security interventions. Drawing on open systems theory and on the capability approach to food security, this paper reports on a study that sought to investigate the contribution of community-based organisations (CBOs) and how such institutions can be leveraged by the public sector to achieve sustainable food security in Kenya's rural areas. A sample of 202 respondents was drawn from 40 CBOs in Kenya's Kakuku sub-location, Thika District. The data was collected through household interviews using a structured questionnaire and was analysed using descriptive statistics. The study established that although 70% of CBOs were undertaking food-security related activities, poor marketing channels and storage facilities were identified as a major hindrance to expanding sustainable food security in the area. The study recommended that capacity building and provision of public services infrastructure was of paramount importance in improving the producer's performance, and in increasing their competitiveness and ability to access agricultural markets in their value-chain. The study further noted that CBOs were an instrument of social transformation and an effective channel for community participation and empowerment. Properly leveraged, CBOs are an important component of the institutional set-up for sustainable food security in developing countries such as Kenya.
Author B.A. BanaSource: Journal of Public Administration 49, pp 637 –652 (2014)More Less
This paper discusses the regulatory and oversight systems necessary for revitalising public administration systems in Africa but with special reference to Tanzania. Regulation is a concept used in different contexts. As Jordana and Levi-Faur, (2004:1) for example opine, regulation can be described as an art and craft of governance, as an institutional reality, as a field of study and as a public discourse, and is more salient and celebrated nowadays than ever before. However, the challenges are as great as the achievements. As a popular subject of study in several disciplines across and beyond the social sciences, various meanings are attached to the concept, a fact that equally leads to reflecting the existence of different theoretical perspectives and disciplinary concerns on the subject. The paper discusses the major theories for understanding regulation before attention is given to various regulatory instruments. The paper then turns to a description of the roles of regulatory institutions as an attempt to discuss the current state before suggesting away forward for policy and managerial improvements.
Author B.C. BashekaSource: Journal of Public Administration 49, pp 653 –671 (2014)More Less
The reassertion of government's role in the last decade has led to a revival of scholarly and practitioner interest in public services, more so in developing countries (Batley, McCourt & Mcloughlin, 2011). The most contentious debate, however, remains first, how best to offer the public services efficiently and effectively and second, what usually stands in the way of most governments to have functional public service systems. Governments deliver services only through efficient and effective public service systems, which ought to be driven by core public service values as opposed to 'managerial values'. Public servants are the backbone and heartbeat of the public service (Mle, 2012:29). In 2011, the government of Uganda adopted, through the Ministry of Public Service, a tripartite panacea for public service ailments that include strategies to improve the public service infrastructure (structures, processes, systems and practices), and the public servant and the client at the tail end of service delivery. However, the implementation of all designed strategies has suffered the usual 'systemic implementation paralysis'. As a consequence, the public service is still perceived as slow and unresponsive to the needs of service users, particularly citizens and the investors. The public servants who have citizen trust are accused of corruption and inefficiency. There are incidences of poor client/customer care, and outright mistreatment. The structures of public service do not function as expected and citizen apathy has increased as those entrusted are not held to account. Such a crisis makes it imperative for public administration scholars to engage in debates on the nature of the problems and suggest possible prescriptions. This article is intended to examine the constraints to the transformation of Uganda's public service. It makes proposals on how the government can create a well-functioning public service.
Source: Journal of Public Administration 49, pp 672 –691 (2014)More Less
The purpose of the study was to establish the extent to which gender mainstreaming practices influenced women's career advancement in the Bank of Uganda (BOU). Specifically, the study strived to establish the extent to which internal recruitment practices, women safety practices and work-family balance practices influenced women's career development in the BOU. The study used a cross sectional design adopting both quantitative and qualitative approaches on a sample of 93 respondents. Data was collected using a questionnaire and interview guide. The study established that internal recruitment gender practice predicted 45.7%, women's safety practice predicted 46.6% while work-family balance predicted 36.3% of the variance in women's career advancement. The study concludes that the problem of women's career advancement in the BOU prevails and is highly associated with procedural inequality in internal recruitment and lack of an adequate gender affirmative action in the internal promotion process, sexual harassment, bullying, inflexible forms of work and inadequate employee assistance programmes. The study recommends that to foster women's career advancement and contribute to the achievement of MDG III, the management of the BOU should strongly commit itself to affirmative action through gender mainstreaming. The internal recruitment process should be adopted (with affirmative action) in the identification of talents for development (succession planning) to take up future managerial positions. The BOU management should strengthen the sexual harassment policies and concretise the bullying practice through sensitisation/awareness building and the implementation of adverse disciplinary action in proved cases, continuously exploit and adopt flexible work forms, and explore the provision of adequate employee assistance programmes such as day care centres and facilities, as well as sabbatical leave.
Human resource development in Tanzania : reflections on its role and challenges in the gas and oil sectorAuthor F.J. Mateng'eSource: Journal of Public Administration 49, pp 692 –703 (2014)More Less
Tanzania is one of the most resource-rich countries of the world yet, it remains one of the world's poorest nations. The inability to effectively manage the vast natural resources for the nation's welfare may partly be attributed to the neglect of what in the 1960s was known as 'administration development'. As a result, there has been minimal attention paid to the role of human resource development (HRD) in creating the required human resource capital with the necessary competences (knowledge, skills and abilities) for effective public policy management. In an effort to address the competence shortages in the areas of gas and oil, for example, and enhance the capacity of the administrative machinery, the government of Tanzania has recently started awarding scholarships to Tanzanians specialising in the fields of natural gas and oil to pursue studies at bachelor and master's degree levels locally and abroad. This article, while acknowledging these interventions, argues that unless a comprehensive and gestalt national HRD system is adopted, the interventions will remain reactive, fragmented and unlikely to produce meaningful long-term national benefits.